From Kemi Yesufu, Abuja
Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Media and Publicity, Abdulrazak Namdas, has denied that the House is hesitant on considering President Muhammadu Buhari’s request for approval of $29.96 billion 2016-2018 external borrowing (rolling) plan.
He told Daily Sun that the House will take action only when it has concluded consultations on the President’s letter.
Namdas had told National Assembly correspondent on September 3 that the House was still consulting on the matter.
He said: “The last time, I told you that we’re still making some consultations, that is why the matter has not come up officially for discussion in the House. We are also mindful of what is happening in the Senate.
“As I told you last time, if the Presidency wants to furnish the Senate with details, I am sure we will also be given details. Because this is not exclusive to the Senate or the House of Representatives.
“This law, for anything to happen officially to pass the bill, both Houses must be on the same page. But as I said, if the Senate has done something that has put this thing on hold, even if we debate it, can’t we also get details? We also need details,” he said.
Recall that the Senate had rejected the $29.96 billion loan, saying the letter sent by the President lacked details.
The South- East Caucus of the House also kicked against the plan as none of the projects to be funded by the loan is in their zone.
Reacting to the statement from the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (House of Representatives), Suleiman Kawu, that the Green Chamber will approve the President’s request, Namdas said his position on the matter was predictably optimistic.
“The Senior Special Assistant’s job is to liaise with us, he’s doing a good job. So, we cannot stop him from trying to be positive about the whole thing. We will also see that this thing will be done. But we will ask few questions. but that can only be done if we have finished with the consultations. I wish you people give us some time, we cannot throw away the communications from the President, it must be discussed”, he said.