Embattled Governor of Nasarawa State, Alhaji Tanko Al-Makura, on Monday in Abuja called on members of the State House of Assembly, plotting to remove him from office, to have a rethink, saying the planned impeachment would not stand.
He also attributed the ongoing impeachment plot against him to “lack of legislative decorum and immaturity” and “a combination of factors, including Abuja factor.”
Speaking with journalists in Abuja through his Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs and former Majority Leader in the House of Assembly, Alhaji Abdulhameed Kwarra, the governor said he had yet to be served the impeachment notice.
He said, “It is already a public knowledge that on Monday July 13 2014, the Nasarawa State House of Assembly had a special sitting and resolved to serve the Executive Governor of Nasarawa State, (Alhaji Tanko Al-Makura) an impeachment notice. So, the issue of serving His Excellency with an impeachment notice is no longer news now.
“What is instructive is the fact that as I speak to you now, on authority, the Nasarawa State House of Assembly is yet to effect that service on the Executive Governor of Nasarawa State. That is to say the so-called notice of impeachment has not yet been formally or officially served on the Executive Governor of Nasarawa State.
“From the surface of what we have seen in the newspapers, I will tell you on authority that the allegations are cooked up, frivolous, baseless and lack any substance. As such any impeachment will not stand.
“I’m emphasising and reiterating the fact that we have not yet been formally and officially served. Impeachment as contemplated under section 188 of the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) does not take the issue of impeachment as if it is children’s birthday party. It is a very serious business to remove the Governor or the Deputy Governor. It follows therefore that the provisions of the Constitution must be strictly followed.”
When reminded of the advertorial placed in newspapers by the State House of Assembly, accusing the governor of extra-budgetary expenses and misappropriation of the appropriation law, Kwarra said, “Whether or not the allegation is true again has to do with understanding the content of the allegation in itself first.”
He added, “We need to understand what the budget is. A budget is a projection of income and expenditure statement expressed in financial terms to be expended within a fiscal year or period. Therefore, if you are talking of extra-budgetary expenditure, it simply means you have overspent what the budget provision has provided for you. Now, the constitution is very clear as it relates to overspending or underspending how that issue should be tackled that is one.
“When you talk about appropriation you are now talking about a legal instrument of sectoral and sub-sectoral allocation of funds authorizing the executive governor to expend also within a fiscal year; if you say he has misappropriated, that is to say he has not kept faith or compliance with the provisions of that law. Again, it is subject to which appropriation law the State Assembly is talking about because between 2011 and 2014 appropriation law is still in progress.
“So which of these appropriation has he misappropriated?”