A former transportation minister, Rotimi Amaechi, was on Wednesday asked to ‘take a bow’ and leave when he appeared before senators.
Mr Amaechi was one of the ministerial nominees who appeared before the Senate for screening.
PREMIUM TIMES reported how President Muhammadu Buhari sent the names of 43 persons to the Senate for confirmation as ministers.
Mr Amaechi was one of the nominees asked to take a bow and not entertain questions from lawmakers. Godswill Akpabio and George Akume had also been asked to take a bow.
Mr Amaechi’s case was, however, after a little confusion on the floor of the Senate among lawmakers.
The Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, had reminded the lawmakers that any nominee with legislative background would be asked to take a bow. But Danjuma Goje (Gombe, APC) stood up to say the Senate rule on such only applies to past federal lawmakers.
Mr Amaechi was a speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly before emerging governor of the state in 2007.
Mr Goje’s comment sparked arguments in the Red Chamber which prompted Mr Lawan to make clarifications.
“I know this is our own tradition but we can regulate ourselves. We should extend this privilege, there is nothing wrong with that. We are not doing it for him. He will benefit not because he came out, but we said so.
“Any nominee who has passed through a legislative house, be it federal or state, should be treated as such,” he said.
The Minority Leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe, thereafter, spoke “on behalf of the Rivers State caucus.” He said much is expected of Mr Amaechi.
“I have spoken to the Rivers State caucus. They have asked me to tell you that they expect that you are a minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, including Rivers State. They want you to know that whatever you can do to sustain peace and security, please do so.
He asked Mr Amaechi to take the railway project in the Eastern corridor (South-South, South-east and North-east) seriously.
“The way you take the development of roads in the Southern corridor seriously, please do so to the Eastern corridor. And railways should be done within Nigeria before we go outside of Nigeria,” he said.
Mr Amaechi was then asked to take a bow and go.
The Senate also asked Emeka Nwajiuba to take a bow. He was the fourth ministerial nominee to be screened by the lawmakers.
Mr Nwajiuba, a serving lawmaker at the House of Representatives from Imo State, was asked to take a bow according to the “tradition” of the Senate.
The call was made after he took out time to give highlights of the contents of his CV.
Mr Nwajiuba had defected to the All Progressives Congress following his ministerial appointment.
After his presentation, the Minority Leader, Mr Abaribe, said the nominee has shown his DNA is PDP and he will be a very good ambassador of the National Assembly to the executive. “We in the minority having loaned him to the other side, he can now take a bow,” he said.
The Senate President thereafter noted that it was a good thing that Mr Nwajiuba was asked to take a bow.
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