The Senate has approved a legislation aimed at halting what it called extra budgetary expenditure by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).This is sequel to the adoption of a bill titled: “A bill for an Act to amend the Central Bank of Nigeria Act 2007 to ensure transparency and accountability in the operation of the bank and subject intervention advances to the approval of National Assembly.”In passing the second reading, the Senate accused the apex bank of acting in contravention of the provision of the Constitution and the Fiscal Responsibility Act through ‎extra-budgetary spending to selected bodies, institutions and agencies.Leading a debate on the motion, the sponsor, Senator Rose Oko, lamented that there is no mechanism in place to monitor and track the CBN intervention funds. This has made it difficult for the lawmakers to properly oversight the agency.She reeled out various intervention funds, which the CBN‎ had carried out without the National Assembly’s approval. “The total capital budget for 2016 was N1.8 trillion. If N1.2 trillion was indeed disbursed or intended ‎as intervention fund, then an amount almost size the capital budget was disbursed without appropriation and tracking to know effectiveness of the intervention in the economy,’’ Oko said.Meanwhile, the Senate has invited the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, to brief it on the delay in completing Bodo-Bonny road project. It directed that the minister should brief its Committee on Works on circumstances surrounding Federal Government’s inability to partner Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas to complete the project.The upper chamber resolved that the committee should carry out independent and comprehensive evaluation of the project and brief it within four weeks.This 37km Bodo/Bonny road project in Rivers State links Bodo community in Gokana local government area to Grand Bonny which hosts the NLNG complex.Senators George Thompson and Osinakachukwu Ideozu who represent Rivers East and West senatorial districts jointly sponsored the motion.And it was a melo-drama yesterday as the Senate finally confirmed Justice Sylvanus Adiewere Nsofor, 82, from Imo State as Ambassador, rejecting a report from the Department of State Service (DSS).Other confirmed nominees are: Joseph Iji (Ondo State) and Yusuf Hinna (Gombe State).The confirmation was sequel to the report presented by Chairman, Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, Monsurat Sunmonu, after the nominees were screened.The Senate had in March this year rejected Nsofor based on its committee’s recommendations that he looked frail and tired during the screening and that his responses to the issues raised during screening were either not answered or devoid of details.In a twist, Sunmonu said the nominee had improved as he answered questions appropriately.She also added that DSS report against the nominee could not be sustained because it did not bother on criminal records but an advice based on Justice Nsofor’s old age.The Senate also mandated its joint standing committee on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora to investigate the causes and proffer solutions to the problems of irregular migration across the Sahara and Mediterranean Sea to Europe

Related Content