Senate: We are Yet to Receive Ministerial List

The Senate in session

Deji Elumoye in Abuja

The Senate Thursday declared that it was yet to receive the list of ministerial nominees from President Muhammadu Buhari, saying it was not within its purview to generate the list.

THISDAY, however gathered that Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad, who has been Acting as Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) in the last six months may be confirmed by the Senate next week, as the substantive CJN.

The upper legislative chamber also berated network providers over dropped calls while urging the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to create friendly monetary policies to drive the African Continental Free Trade Zone Area (AfCTA) recently signed by African leaders including President Buhari.

Chairman of the Senate Ad-hoc committee on Media and Publicity, Senator Adedayo Adedayo, told journalists after plenary that the much-awaited list was yet to be received from President Buhari, despite the assurance given at Wednesday’s plenary by Senate President, Dr. Ahmed Lawan, that the ministerial list may get to the Senate before the week runs out.

Adeyeye said the Senate is not in receipt of any ministerial list adding that Senators are anxious to work on the ministerial nominee list but all that depends on the executive who is mandated by the constitution to produce the list. “Like I said here two or three days ago, this matter is not within t= control of the Senate. We cannot generate the list on our own, the constitution does not permit us to do that.”

The constitution has assigned responsibility to various part of government, and it is the prerogative of the executive to nominate Ministers which will then be confirmed by the Senate.

Also yesterday, the Senate condemned the inefficiency of Global System Mobile telecommunications (GSM)network providers in Nigeria resulting in poor service delivery.

It also directed the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to carry out a thorough investigation of the causes of dropped calls in the GSM network and come up with innovations that would improve customer experience.

It therefore urged the NCC to “invoke the appropriate provisions of the law and other extant agreements to protect consumers where necessary”.

These decisions were arrived at sequel to a motion moved by Senator Abdulfatai Buhari (Oyo North) and co-sponsored by 34 others during plenary.

Senate President in his remarks, said the 9th Senate would do everything to protect Nigerians against exploitation by telecoms service providers.

The Senate, he assured, would not only bark but bite this time around.

Meanwhile, the Senate also yesterday, expressed concern over the lack of awareness by ordinary Nigerians of the importance of African Continental Free Trade Zone Area (AfCTA), signed by African leaders, including President Muhammadu Buhari recently.

It said if adequate awareness is not created, Nigerians may not fully have a full grasp of what it means and also enjoy the benefits attached to it.

The Senate equally urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to create an enabling monetary environment to guarantee the benefits of the trade agreement.

The upper legislative chamber, made the observations while adopting a motion with the title ‘Nigeria’s membership of AfCTA’ sponsored by Senator Barau Jibrin ( Kano North).

Meanwhile, the Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad, who has been Acting as Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) in the last six months may be confirmed by the Senate next week.

A ranking Senator told THISDAY after plenary yesterday that going by the Senate Rules, the upper legislative chamber will invite the Acting CJN to appear before the Committee of the Whole for proper screening.

The Committee is expected to be presided over by Senate President, Lawan, during plenary.