N3.7tn budget padding allegation: Senate suspends Ningi for three months

The Senate on Tuesday, handed a three-month suspension to Senator Abdul Ningi, over his allegations that the 2024 Budget was padded to the tune of N3.7trillion.

Before now, some northern senators disowned the claims made by Ningi, saying the Bauchi State senator did not speak for them.

The Bauchi senator, a member of the Peoples Democratic Party, however, maintained his position on Monday that N3.7tn could not be accounted for in the 2024 budget.

In the plenary on Tuesday, Senator Olamilekan Adeola (APC, Ogun West) raised a motion that there is urgent need to address the false allegation by Ningi.

Adeola, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Appropriations, read the transcript of Ningi’s Hausa BBC interview on the floor of the house after Senate President, Godswill Akpabio, called for a committee of the whole house.

Meanwhile, Senator Jimoh Ibrahim moved an amended motion for the suspension of Ningi for 12 months while adding that Senator Sumaila Kawu (Kano South, NNPP) be warned.

Senator Chris Ekpeyong (Akwa-Ibom North-West, PDP) opposed this by moving a motion of amendment that the suspension be reduced to six months, and it was seconded.

Another senator, Garba Maidoki (Kebbi South), however, made further amendment, asking that Ningi be suspended for three months.

After putting the amended motion to a voice vote, Akpabio ruled, “Senator Ningi is hereby suspended from the Senate for a period of three months.”

Immediately after the pronouncement was made, Ningi was led out of the floor of the Senate by one of the Sergeants-at-arm.

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