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Blackmail won’t stop TSA probe, Saraki says



Why 2016 budget is delayed –Saraki

Obviously disturbed by the amount of condemnation that has trailed the decision of the Senate to probe the management of the Treasury Single Account and the alleged N25 billion paid as commission for the collection of government revenue via an e-platform, Remita, the President of the Senate, Sen. Bukola Saraki, Tuesday, vowed that no amount of intimidation will stop the Senate from investigating the management of the TSA.

Saraki was reacting to a motion moved by Sen. Dino Melaye over a newspaper article allegedly blackmailing the Senate for pointing out the alleged fraud.

According to him, the Senate would not relent in carrying out its constitutional duties, including alerting the nation on activities that are likely to be detrimental to Nigerians.

“No amount of either blackmail or intimidation will stop us from doing the work we have to do.

“We have a responsibility here to ensure that there are no leakages in government funds and if there are, we will call the attention of the public and do whatever it takes to salvage the situation; it is our responsibility.

“The fact about the TSA will come out and everybody will have opportunity before the committee to state the fact, the facts will speak for themselves,’’ Saraki said.

Melaye, in his motion, said his attention was drawn to the write-up accusing the Senate of working against President Muhammadu Buhari’s effort to implement TSA.

Read also: Senate probes Buhari’s TSA

He noted, that it was the Senate’s stand on the alleged TSA fraud that led SystemSpecs to refund the one per cent it collected from mopped up funds to Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

According to him, “We did not at any time in this Hallowed Chamber implicate President Muhammadu Buhari of being involved in TSA fraud. We will not stop carrying out our legislative duties for fear of being blackmailed.

“So for people to blackmail us as irresponsible, it is not acceptable to me and the Senate. Never would we allow blackmail and political and economic bigots to destroy the people. We are for the people and we will stand in defence of public interest,’’ he said.

The write-up and letters cited by Melaye were referred to the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petition to be returned to Senate in one week.

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