Senate minority whip slams Police over NASS crisis

The Senate Minority Whip, Ganiyu Solomon, has condemned the crisis that engulfed the National Assembly on Thursday when the House of Representatives reconvened to consider President Goodluck Jonathan’s request for extension of emergency rule in Yobe, Adamawa and Borno States.

The police had blocked the Speaker of the House, Aminu Tambuwal, and other members of the House from going into the complex to perform their duties.

The crisis that broke out was believed to be connected with the defection of the Speaker from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to the All Progressives Congress, APC.

Mr. Solomon said on Friday that the police action was the height of executive lawlessness and interference.

He said the invasion of the hallowed chambers of the House was a signal that the police might not be impartial in the February 2015 general election.

He asked the Inspector-General of Police, Suleiman Abba, to maintain neutrality in political matters and remain impartial in contests among the political parties.

Mr. Solomon, who is a governorship aspirant on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Lagos State, said the issue of Mr. Tambuwal’s defection and his position as Speaker should be left to the members to resolve and instead of the executive arm trying to muscle him out of office.

“With Tambuwal already in court, Police should allow the judiciary to decide what should happen to his seat, not the executive arm interpreting the constitution. Thursday’s incident was tragic in every sense of it. A repeat could completely undermine this democracy,” the senator said.

Mr. Solomon, who is the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Capital Market, expressed worry about the negative impact the much-publicised crisis could have on Nigeria’s international trade, pointing out that the signals were already there as evident in the live chat that Richard Quest of CNN had with the Minister of Finance yesterday.

He said, “Quest pointed out that the international world was worried about the crisis and our economy. The world is now a global village, we must be very careful.”

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