Fashola Apologises to Lawmakers over Budget Row
The war of words raging between the minister of Works, Power and Housing Babatunde Fashola and the National Assembly ended yesterday in a dramatic manner, with the minister tendering his apology to the law makers for his recent alleged disparaging remarks about them over their powers to alter projects in budgets.
In a humuliating clamp-down, he said he had been quoted out of context by the media, that he’s likely to blame journalists for his ordeal with lawmakers.
The minister, who appeared before the House of Representatives Investigative Committee on Breach of Privilege, Violation of Appropriation Act and Incitement of the Nigerian Public, refused to take responsibility for what was published in newspapers, describing the reports as misrepresentation from the interview he earlier granted.
Fashola was quoted as saying legislators had stark and worrisome knowledge of the budget process and further queried the power of the National Assembly to alter the 2017 budget after the budget defence exercise.
The House, which utterly condemned his utterances, passed a resolution on July 4 during plenary and resolved to set up an ad-hoc committee to investigate the statement credited to him, stressing that his position on the power of the parliament to alter the budget was capable of inciting the public against the legislature.
He said in the interview he granted a foremost online publication, he merely spoke about projects across the country and the problem of his ministry’s budget.