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Senate Threatens Jonathan With Impeachment

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Nigerian Senate, Thursday, threatened President Goodluck Jonathan with impeachment notices over the failure of the executive to implement resolutions passed by the National Assembly.

Members of the upper legislative chamber therefore called on the President to immediately commence the implementation to avert the impeachment plot, arguing that the presidency had severally abandoned resolutions of both the House of Representatives and the Senate.

Senator Uche Chukwumerije from Abia State, who raised the alarm over the way the presidency had been handling resolutions of the legislative arm of government, said the Senate had been patient for too long with the President and warned that should the President continue to abandon the resolutions of the Senate and the House of Representatives, he would personally launch an impeachment against him.

Recalling some of the resolutions that the President had brushed aside, Senator Chukwumerije said, "we recommended sanctions against key officials of the BPE but the President hasn't done anything about it. It will get to a point of threatening him with impeachment. I will move the motion."

Many Senators, while supporting Senator Chukwumerije during the debate on amendment bill on the establishment of the Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE), recalled that they had passed a resolution seeking the sack of the Director General of the Bureau, Bola Onagoruwa, and that this resolution was not implemented as Mrs. Onagoruwa has continued to maintain her office even in the face of indictment.

The Senators, who also warned the presidency to immediately desist from implementing the policy on the introduction of the N5, 000 currency, alleged that the presidency has insisted that the resolution of the National Assembly on the proposed currency note was not binding on the executive arm of government.

But others argued that President Jonathan was contemplating suspending the introduction of the currency into the country's economy.

The Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, who presided on over the session, advised the President to muster the courage to implement all the resolutions of the Senate, stressing that it was an opportunity for the President "to go and look for the resolutions of the Senate. If a very fat buttock is sitting on it, I think the President should use his executive powers and push them out and get the report and begin to implement them."

Senator Ekweremadu, who was visibly referring to the Minister of Information, Labaran Maku, as the clog, warned that anybody who is ignoring the resolutions of this Senate is doing so at the expense of good governance, "and we cannot encourage such things."

Labaran Maku, had on Tuesday announced that the decision of the House of Representatives was not binding on the President, just like Dr. Reuben Abati, aide of the President said in January this year in the wake of the fuel subsidy crisis.

However, the House has remained resolute on the impeachment threat, saying it would know what steps to take after evaluating the 2012 budget performance by next week.

It could be recalled that the House of Representatives had on Wednesday said it no longer recognised Mrs. Arunma Oteh as the Director General of the Security and Exchange Commission. The members also slammed the President for refusing to sack the woman.