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‘With A Largely Corrupt Legislature, Nigeria Is Doomed’ Obasanjo Says Nigerian Lawmakers Are Thieves

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo went hard on Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan as earlier reported by NewsWireNGR, but he didn’t stop there Wednesday.

The Former Board of Trustees Chairman of the ruling People’s Democratic Party, PDP went on to slam majority of Nigeria’s lawmakers who he said live above the law in both misconduct and corruption and cannot in good conscience carry out oversight duties on any government ministry or department.

He says,“Apart from shrouding the remunerations of the National Assembly in opaqueness and without transparency, they indulge in extorting money from departments, contractors and ministries in two ways,” Mr. Obasanjo said.

“They do so during visits to their projects and programmes and in the process of budget approval when they build up budgets for ministries and departments, who agree to give it back to them in contracts that they do not execute. They do similar things during their inquiries.”

He said, “Corruption in the National Assembly also includes what they call constituency projects which they give to their agents to execute but invariably, full payment is made with little or no job done.

“In all this, if the executive is not absolutely above board, the offending members of the National Assembly resort to subtle or open threat, intimidation and blackmail. When the executive pay the huge money, normally in millions of dollars, all is quiet in form of whitewashed reports that fail to deal effectively with the issues investigated.”

The former president insisted that over the years, the National Assembly never singled out any corrupt lawmaker except where the executive led in the indictment of a member.

Mr. Obasanjo who was speaking at the public presentation of the autobiography of Justice Mustapha Akanbi, in Abuja, regretted that every aspect of Nigeria’s national life is riddled with corruption.

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