The Senate on Thursday hit back at the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal, after he dismissed the legislative body as saying “balderdash” over the call for his removal and prosecution.
The Senate had on Wednesday asked President Muhammadu Buhari to suspend Mr. Lawal and ensure his prosecution over alleged breach of Nigerian laws in handling contracts awarded by the Presidential Initiative for the North East, (PINE).
An ad-hoc committee of the Senate on “mounting humanitarian crisis in the North East” led by Shehu Sani submitted its interim report on Wednesday and indicted Mr. Lawal for allegedly receiving N233 million contract to clear invasive plant species in Yobe State through a company, Rholavision Nigeria Limited.
The Senate alleged he remained a director of the company till September 2016, over a year after his appointment, in breach of Nigeria’s code of conduct for public officials as enshrined in the 1999 constitution.
Rholavision was incorporated in 1990 by Mr. Lawal, he confirmed, to carry out information and communication technology services.
But it was found by the Senate to be handling a N233 million bush clearing contract in the North East in 2016.
The Yobe State Government said the contract was never executed.
But less than an hour after the Senate indicted him and called on authorities to punish him, Mr. Lawal accompanied his principal, Mr. Buhari, to the National Assembly to present the 2017 budget proposal.