The Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Itse Sagay, has described the Nigerian Senate as “a merciless and ruthless organisation” with no value.
Mr. Sagay who also added that the lawmakers behaved ”like locusts” said this on the sidelines of the Hallmarks of Labour Foundation Reunion Symposium held at the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, NIIA, Victoria Island, Lagos, on Thursday.
Mr. Sagay, a Professor of Law, has in recent times lambasted Nigerian federal legislators over the allowances enjoyed by the senators and House of Representatives members.
Speaking in Lagos on Thursday, Mr. Sagay said Nigerian senators should not be addressed as “distinguished” because they have no honour, vision, and integrity.
Earlier, Abdullahi Sabi, the spokesperson of the Nigerian senate, had criticised the utterances of the lawyer, stressing that the Nigerian government lost many corruption cases due to Mr. Sagay failure to function properly as the government’s anti-corruption adviser.
But on Thursday, Mr. Sagay said the senators were simply out to ”totally suck out the blood of Nigeria for themselves because they behave like locusts.”
“They have no mercy, they have no conscience; they simply want to behave like locust just to finish everything within their environment for themselves. That’s totally unacceptable and I’m not going to relent on this thing (criticism),” he said.
“Look at the allowance they take, forget the amount. Why would a whole Senator collect money for his wardrobe? Is he naked? Does a labourer, who is taking just N18,000 a month, get it? He’s the one who needs the money for wardrobe allowance.
“But these opulent, rich, super-rich people are still collecting from you and me to clothe themselves; they’re collecting money from you and me to buy newspapers; they said they’re suffering hardship by working inside chambers that are fully air-conditioned with luxurious cushions, with people serving them left, right and centre, with food and drinks available.”
According to him, government ”could distribute the loot that constitutes these allowances among poor Nigerians.”
He said: “If you ask them what is their income they will tell you they’re earning a salary which is taxable, which is very little – about one to two million (Naira) a month.
“They will never talk about those allowances which bring their income into tens of millions. We haven’t come near what senators and House of Representatives people are really taking.
“We are talking about allowances; there are many other secret things that they are taking that have not been exposed. If you go to that gentle man (Abdulmumin Jibrin) who was suspended from the House of Representatives last year, he has a huge story to tell of the billions that nobody knows about that they’re collecting. So there will be no rest until there is justice.”
Mr. Jibrin was suspended by his colleagues in the House of Representatives last year for accusing its leaders of padding the budget and other sundry acts.
He also tackled President Muhammadu Buhari for not taking steps to curtail the corrupt acts of members of his party, the All Progressive Congress, APC, which controls the National Assembly.
The National Assembly is yet to react to his latest outburst by Mr. Sagay.