Deji Elumoye in Abuja
The Senate Wednesday granted one-week extension to its Ad-hoc committee investigating Senator Elisha Abbo (Adamawa North) alleged assault on a nursing mother in an adult toy shop in Abuja recently.
This is just as the Senate Deputy Minority Whip, Senator Sahabi Ya’u, said the introduction of Rural Grazing Area (RUGA) in Zamfara State will put an end to incidents of banditry in the state.
Chairman of the seven-man ad-hoc committee, Senator Sam Egwu (Ebonyi North), had told the Senate at plenary that the victim, who was reportedly slapped by the lawmaker in a video that has gone viral, did not honour his invitation.
According to him, all efforts to make both the assaulted lady and the shop owner to appear before the committee did not succeed.
The former governor of Ebonyi State said the embattled senator refused to make submissions before the ad hoc panel because he said doing so would be subjudice.
He also said both the Commissioner of Police in charge of the FCT command and the lawyers of the victims also refused to make submissions, citing the same reasons.
Egwu, therefore, requested that his panel investigations be stepped down pending the determination of the criminal case instituted against Abbo by the police.
The Senate President, Dr. Ahmad Lawan, in his response, disagreed with Egwu, stressing that the panel could go ahead with its work notwithstanding the court case.
According to him, what the Senate was investigating was the alleged misconduct of its member and not the criminal case against him which is already being handled by the police.
Egwu, therefore, sought the permission of the leadership for a one-week extension to enable his committee to submit its report.
The Senate president granted the request and asked the Egwu-led ad-hoc committee to submit the report next week.
Meanwhile, Senate Deputy Minority Whip, Senator Sahabi Ya’u, has said the proposed implementation of the RUGA scheme would address the problems of banditry in Zamfara State.
Ya’u (Zamfara North) told journalists yesterday that “the current plan by the Zamfara State governor to implement the RUGA scheme will sufficiently address a major aspect of the root causes of the attacks.
“Crisis of such nature should be tackled by various means not limited to the use of maximum force.
“What the state government is currently doing is not the use of force, and everybody can attest to the fact that we are getting results. This can be built upon using other approaches that would address the root causes of these mindless killings.
“It is important for everyone, every stakeholder to understand that every crisis has a root cause, and until you address the fundamental issues, there won’t be light at the end of the tunnel. It is on this premise that I urge the federal government to assist in addressing the root causes and proffer solutions to these issues so that we can have peace in that state and the entire region.”
Ya’u also called on all stakeholders in the state to treat the issue of banditry with utmost sense of patriotism and not on political or religion lines.
He said: “When bandits attack, they do that without taking religion or political inclinations into account, and everyone to that extent, becomes a victim. All hands must be on the deck to address this menace.”
He challenged the federal government to compliment efforts of the Zamfara
State Government as well as that of the leadership of the House of Representatives to end insecurity and bloodletting in the state.