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HomeNewsMinisterial screening: Keyamo apologises to Senate over misconduct as minister

Ministerial screening: Keyamo apologises to Senate over misconduct as minister

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A ministerial nominee, Festus Keyamo, has apologised to the Nigerian Senate on Monday over his conduct, which tended to undermine the oversight functions of the parliament during his tenure as Minister of State for Employment, Labour and Productivity, in the immediate past administration.

The apology was made against the backdrop of controversy that rocked his screening in the early hours of Monday, when Senator Darlington Nwokocha, representing Abia Central Senatorial District, who was a member of the House of Representatives in the ninth National Assembly, raised a point of order to explain the nominee’s sheer arrogance when asked to appear before the committee that oversighted him.

Nwokocha cited Section 88 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, as amended, where it was incumbent on the parliament to carry out its legislative activities, but Festus Keyamo lacked respect for the said sections of the constitution.

The lawmaker moved a motion for his screening to be stepped down, which was seconded by Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe.

Amid the confusion, the Chamber went into a closed-door session.

At the resumption after five hours, the nominee reappeared and tendered an apology before Senators, but further explained that the controversial N52 billion Social Works Programme, which was meant for distribution to 774 Local Government Councils across the states, though, was his initiative, he never saw the money.

“The fund was distributed by the Central Bank of Nigeria to beneficiaries directly without me knowing who got any money.

“There is a register that captures every beneficiary, and it was the Central Bank of Nigeria that shared the money to Nigerians who had already been captured through the approved criteria.”

Meanwhile, Senator Godiya Akwashiki from Nasarawa, who was the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Labour, Employment and Productivity, expressed his disgust at the manner in which the nominee treated his committee, accepted his apology, and said: “Go and sin no more.”

Keyamo was thereafter asked to take a bow and go.

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