Rt. Honourable Ghali Na’Abba, former Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives, has taken a swipe at former President Olusegun Obasanjo describing him as the most corrupt Nigerian.
Recall that former President Obasanjo was recently reported to have described members of the National Assembly (NASS) as corrupt people who lack integrity.
It is curious to note that Hon. Ghali Umar Na’Abba was the speaker during former President Obasanjo’s first tenure as President.
Na’Abba disclosed that the former President whom he described as having nothing before he became President, engaged in questionable and undefendable expenditures while in office.
The former speaker in an interview bared his mind on the current padding saga rocking the National Assembly.
He affirmed that it is the constitutional responsibility of the National Assembly to look into the budget presented to it, and act upon it.
Speaking on the corruption allegation against the NASS, he said:
“Well, I don’t think there is anybody more corrupt in this country like the former President.
“I believe you are talking about the former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
“As the Speaker, I took Obasanjo on several issues of expenditure offences which he committed and could not show remorse.
“So, I don’t think he has the integrity to call anybody in the NASS corrupt.
“This is the man who became President with nothing and today he is one of the richest Nigerians, let him explain to Nigerians how he acquired the money.”
Ghali Na’Abba Says Obasanjo Most Corrupt
Speaking on Obasanjo’s alleged third term plan, Ghali Na’Abba said:
“I am aware that some monies were given to the national assembly members, both the House of Representatives and the Senate.
“It was alleged that the Senators got 50 million each while 40 million was given to the house of representative members, some collected and some did not collect.
“But I’m aware that money was distributed by Obasanjo.”
On the budget padding saga, he said:
“For some weeks now, there has been controversy over what is called padding. As far as I am concerned, the National Assembly has the responsibility to pass the budget, approve it and allow the executive arm to execute it.
“According to my understanding, where the issue being referred to as padding comes into play is a situation where some members go behind and add items of expenditure to what has already been agreed upon, for either stealing the funds or doing whatever they feel like doing with it.
“But, this stealing of fund cannot be possible without the active connivance with some members of the executive arm.”
When asked whether padding was an offense, Na’Abba said:
“It all depends from what angle you look at it. I just told you that the responsibility of appropriation belongs to the national assembly.
“If padding is seen as an offense, then it is when some members of the national assembly decide to add items of expenditure through the back door after the budget has been passed by both houses.”
Following the aftermath of the padding saga, Na’Abba admonished Nigerians to decide wisely who represents them in the national assembly.