By Ben Agande,
Kaduna – Six members of the House of Representatives from Kaduna state have dissociated themselves from the position of the their caucus leader, Honourable Datti Babawo that they are in support of the state obtaining a $350 million from the world bank.
It would be recalled that the senate rejected the loan request by the state government from the world Bank following similar rejection by three members of the senate from the state.
But a member of the House of Representatives, Datti Babawo alleged that all but one member of the House of Representatives from the state met and threw their weight behind the loan request.
Refuting the claim, six members of the House of Representatives from the state alleged that Honourable Babawo spoke in his personal capacity and not on behalf of the group.
The members who signed the statement included Hon. Jagaba Adams Jagaba – Kachia/Kagarko; Hon Lucas Gwani – Kaura; Hon. Barr. Simon Yakubu Arabo -Kauru; Hon. Nicholas Shehu Garba – Jema’a/Sanga; Hon. Barr. Sunday Marshall Katung – Jaba/Zangon- Kataf and Hon. Barr. Muhammad Musa Soba – Soba.
“Our attention has been drawn to stories making the rounds in some National Dailies,Televisions and Social Media alleging that fifteen (15) members of the House of Representatives from Kaduna State have faulted the Senate’s disapproval of a $350m World Bank loan requested by the Kaduna State Government.
“The news said that the Leader of the Kaduna State House of Reps Caucus, Hon. Datti Babawo (representing Sabon Gari Federal Constituency, Kaduna State), stated that all the fifteen (15) members out of sixteen (16) actually approved the $350m loan for the state because of the enormous benefits the State would derive from it.
“First and foremost, the Kaduna State Caucus in the House of Reps has not elected a leader. It is therefore strange for Hon. Datti Babawo to arrogate such powers on himself.
“Secondly, as members of House of Reps from Kaduna State, we never at any given time met to discuss the $350m loan, let alone taking a decision on it.
“Thirdly, we operate a bicameral legislature in Nigeria, and to that extent, the House of Reps has no business questioning the decision(s) of the Senate. Both chambers operate independently and have mutual respect for each other in the spirit of the Constitution. In disapproving the loan therefore, the Senate acted within its constitutional powers. It is clear mischief and sheer ignorance for Hon. Datti to cast aspersion on the institution of the Senate.
“Fourthly, in practice, loan approvals or otherwise, are carried out at plenary after exhaustive debate upon presentation by the relevant committee, and not by State Caucuses as mischievously portrayed by Hon. Datti.
“Fifthly, we wish to reiterate that not all House of Reps members from Kaduna State are in support of the loan issue. It is on record that some members have spoken against incurring such a huge debt on the people of Kaduna State.
“Finally, in view of the above, we wish to dissociate ourselves from the views expressed by Hon. Datti as they are entirely his own, seeing that he is neither the Leader nor the Spokesman of the Kaduna State Caucus in the House of Reps. The Senate acted within its constitutional powers and in the best interest of a majority of Kaduna State people. We therefore, cannot question its decision” the group said.