Saraki: Why I suffered persecution as senate president
Nigeria’s senate president, Bukola Saraki has stated that he suffered “persecution” when he was senate president because he stood for the independence of the national assembly.
This was made known by the former senate president during a Twitter space discussion titled #2023Elections, which was hosted by Rinu Oduala, one of the organisers of the #EndSARS protest.
Saraki, a former governor of Kwara state, was the senate president of the eighth national assembly from 2015 to 2019.
During the online conversation, participants asked the speakers, including Saraki, questions on the 2023 general election and previous political engagements.
Aisha Yesufu, activist and co-convener of the Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG), accused the eighth national assembly of being the “worst in Nigeria’s history”, adding that the current national assembly gave “failure another meaning”.
Yesufu also added that the eighth assembly under Saraki paid lip service to the #OpenNASS, a campaign on openness, transparency and accountability of the national assembly.
Responding to the activist’s comment, Saraki said he “totally disagreed” that the eighth national assembly is the “worst in history”.
He said the national assembly under him did not curry favour from the executive.
The former Kwara governor said the struggle he faced while he was the senate president was because he stood for the independence of the national assembly.
On the #OpenNASS campaign, the former senate president said the national assembly under him made it’s budget a public document.
“When she talked about #OpenNASS, you can go and check the records before the eighth national assembly, there was no time before then that the budget of the national assembly was a public document,” Saraki said.
“We made it public for the first time in the history of the national assembly, that is one of our achievements.
“Not only that, The budget process for the first time had public hearings, it has never happened in the history of this country.
“In the history of the national assembly, loans that were being requested by governors were being asked questions. We say ‘tell us what these specific loans are for’. It has never happened, it is not happening now. Is it?
“When you talked about curry favour. One of the things we went through is because we were not curried. All the personal prosecutions I went through was because I did not curry favour.
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