- As Lawmakers flee the State
Uneasy calm presently pervades the Zamfara State and the Zamfara House of Assembly, following an alleged impeachment move against the State Governor Abdulaziz Yari.
According to Voice of America Hausa Service report, the Zamfara State Assembly has reported that their leaders were arrested by the Department of State Security Service, DSS on the orders of the Governor.
According to the report, the lawmakers that were arrested include the Speaker Alhaji Sanusi Garba Rikiji, his deputy, Muhammad Abubakar Gumi, the majority leader, Isah Abdulmumini and the chief whip, Abdullahi Dansadau.
As learnt, the governor became jittery when the Lawmakers requested for a meeting with him over what they termed as “the difficult situation the state found itself” with concerns to the way the governor has been governing the State and how to mitigate the problems facing the state.
Speaking to Voice of America, a member of the State Assembly, said; everyone knows the precarious situation that the state has found itself, saying “people accuse the governor of abandoning the state, and they are also complaining about the handling of the state resources especially the bailout funds released specifically to pay workers’ salaries”.
“The money came but no one knows what happened to it, as we speak local government staff, pensioners have not been paid, in fact, our traditional rulers have not been paid their 5% constitutional allocation for several months, civil servants pay was cut and some of them were even sacked because of dwindling revenue, however, they were not paid their entitlement even after the bailout came.
“That is why we invited them, definitely not for impeachment purposes,” he said.
As learnt by this medium, the lawmakers for fear of arrest and to evade arrest are already seeking refuge in Kaduna state, where they issued a statement to the President asking him to interfere on the matter even as the accused the governor of abuse of office.
In the statement signed by Hon. Mannir Gidan Jaja, the Chairman, House Committee on Information, Mannir Gidan Jaja, also accused the governor of corruption adding that he uses Local government funds for State issues.
Other issues where the governor was accuses include, not being able to give details and explanation on how he used the N1 billion commercial agriculture loan given to the state by the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN.
He was also accused of “non-remittance of pension funds to pension administrators, non-remittance of 5 percent emirate councils funds, the gross misappropriation of bailout funds to the state by the federal government to settle workers’ salaries, including N10b for 2014 and N1.46b in 2016”.
According to them, they accused Governor of crippling governance in the state through his constant travelling abroad and his refusal to address the issues raised by them.
“Rather he resorted to political intimidation, arrest and detention of principal officers of the House and other supporting staff.”
Meanwhile, the state commissioner of information, Umaru Bukkuyum, denied that the lawmaker were in detention. Mr. Bukkuyum said the lawmakers were “just invited to Abuja for a meeting on how to find solution to all the problems”.