₦‎3.7 Trillion Budget Padding Claim: Senate Suspends Senator Ningi For Three Months

The Senate has taken action against Senator Abdul Ningi by suspending him for three months following allegations of N3.7 trillion being padded into the 2024 budget. Ningi, who serves as the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Population and represents the PDP in Bauchi Central, faced disciplinary measures amid calls for a thorough investigation into the allegation.

Despite the controversy, some northern senators distanced themselves from Ningi’s claims, emphasizing that he did not speak on their behalf. However, Ningi remained steadfast in his assertion that N3.7 trillion could not be accounted for in the 2024 budget.

During the plenary session on Tuesday, Senator Olamilekan Adeola, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Appropriations, raised a motion to address the false allegation made by Ningi. He presented the transcript of Ningi’s interview with Hausa BBC on the Senate floor, prompting Senate President Godswill Akpabio to convene a committee of the whole house.

Subsequently, Senator Jimoh Ibrahim proposed the suspension of Ningi for 12 months, while also suggesting a warning for Senator Sumaila Kawu of Kano South. These developments highlight the Senate’s response to allegations of budgetary irregularities and underscore the importance of accountability and integrity within legislative proceedings.

Senator Chris Ekpeyong (Akwa-Ibom North-West, PDP) opposed by moving a motion of amendment that it be adjusted to six months and it was seconded. Another Senator said a three-month suspension should be adopted.