By Newsband

Nigerians decry the N35b to the Judiciary and N70 billion allocation to the House of Representatives by President Tinubu

NEWSDAILYNIGERIA: Nigerians from all walks of life are presently crying blue murder over N35 billion to be allocated to the National Judicial Council (NJC) which many described as daylight bribery, as well as the N500 billion for to be allocated to “poor Nigerian masses” as palliatives also described as vote buying in case the Presidential Election Petition Court (PEPC) nullifies the 2023 presidential election.

Nigerians also noted with disdain the N70 billion allocation to the House of Representatives by President Tinubu.

Before we go into the nitty gritty of the presidential largesse, it could be recalled that News Band reported on July 12, 2023, that Tinubu sought the approval the National Assembly for N500 billion as palliative to cushion the effect of removal of fuel subsidy.

This was contained in a letter read on the floor of the House of Representatives by the Speaker, Hon. Tajudeen Abbas, on Wednesday during plenary.

In the letter entitled “Request for the amendment of the 2022 appropriation act”, President Tinubu said the money will be sourced from the 2022 supplementary Appropriation Act of N819.5 billion.

The amount, according to the President’s letter sent on July 12 and read by the Speaker, Rep. Tajudeen Abbas, was meant to support the working conditions of new members.

News Band gathered that out of this amount, N35 billion will be allocated to the National Judicial Council at a time when the Judiciary is handling petitions challenging the electoral victory of “President” Bola Ahmed Tinubu!

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Meanwhile, only N8,000 will be allocated to poor families for six months from the N500 billion.

A summary of the N500 billion for palliatives and other capital expenditure seen by News Band reads as follows:

  • N500 billion for palliatives and other capital expenditure to cushion the effect of recent subsidy removal policy.
  • N185,236,937,815 to Ministry of Works and Housing to alleviate the impact of the severe flooding experienced in the country in 2022 on road infrastructure across the 6 geo-political zones.
  • N19,200,000,000 to Federal Ministry of Agriculture to ameliorate the massive destruction to farmlands across the country during the severe flooding experienced last year.
  • N35 billion to National Judicial Council.
  • N10 billion to Federal Capital Territory Administration for critical projects, and,
  • N70 billion to National Assembly to support the working conditions of new members.

It is also noteworthy that the NJC is headed by the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Olukayode Ariwoola, who has recently been slammed visa ban alongside six other Supreme Court Justices by the United States Government

The U.S Government placed a visa ban on CJN Ariwoola and six others members of the Supreme Court of Nigeria including, but not limited to, Justices Kudirat Olatokunbo Kekere-Ekun, Musa Dattijo Mohammed, Centus Nweze, all of the Supreme Court.

It could also be recalled that News Band, in an Editorial entitled “Kekere-Ekun: a case of the evil that (wo)men do?“, had reported how Kekere-Ekun was banned from the United States.

She was banned amidst the report that one Abdul Adewale Kekere-Ekun, a Nigerian fugitive and son of the controversial judge was sentenced to life imprisonment in the United Kingdom for the murder of 18-year-old Marcus Hall in 2001, following a brawl outside Luton’s Atmosphere Nightclub.

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At this point, it is only Justice Ariwoola who knows how to utilize the N35 billion which, according to  Mr. Jackson Udeh, is expected to be distributed among the Justices of the Supreme Court.

Mr. Udeh also lamented that the largesse may potentially influence their decisions in favor of a rerun instead of disqualification of Tinubu and his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), especially with regards to the Presidential Election Petition.

Another source equally lamented that the N8,000 allocated to families for six months from the N500 billion could be seen as a form of vote buying in anticipation of a rerun.

”Bola Tinubu is undoubtedly a political strategist and a crook,” the source, who pleaded anonymity, had said.

Another observer noted that the N35 billion allocation to NJC is a serious and indictable conflict of interest.

A political pundit also observed with curiosity that Tinubu made the request from the House of Representatives and not from the Senate said further that the House granted the request without much hesitation.

In a publication dated July 13, 2023, News Band had reported that the House of Representatives approved Tinubu’s request for an amendment to the 2022 appropriation act and subsequent approval of N500 billion to allow the federal government to provide palliatives to cushion the effects of petrol subsidy removal on Nigerians.

Presently, all eyes are on the judiciary to see how many rabbits, if any, it will pull out of its hat in the petitions filed by Mr. Peter Gregory Obi and his Labour Party (LP), and the application of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and his Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).


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