• May approve N500bn Intervention Fund for COVID-19

Barring any last-minute change, the Senate will pass the N500 billion Intervention Fund request to be sent by President Muhammadu Buhari to assist the Federal Government in tackling the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a letter addressed to senators Monday, the Senate said it would resume plenary today.

Some lawmakers, especially the aged and sick may be excused from attending the sitting, Daily Sun gathered.

It was, however, learnt that some of the senators were moving against plans by the leadership of the Senate to approve funding requests by the executive.

The dissenting senators, it was learnt, are complaining about the absence of transparency in the management of funds that have so far been disbursed for projects.

It was learnt that to ease the brewing protest, Senate President Ahmad Lawan and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, Monday, called for an emergency meeting of Principal Officers of the National Assembly.

Confirming the resumption of plenary, Clerk to the Senate, Nelson Ayewo, in a statement, said while Senators are expected to be in the chamber at 10 am on, the staff of the National Assembly, as well as aides of senators, are to work from home, but that if their services were needed they would be notified.

Daily Sun also reports that in order to reduce the number of persons who would enter the National Assembly, only two electronic media outfits, as well as two print media outfits, would be permitted to enter the Senate building.

On the N500 billion Intervention Fund request, it was learnt that appropriate organs of the executive arm of government would be made to provide answers to earlier questions raised by National Assembly leadership regarding sources of the Fund and its mode of implementation before approval is given.

While the National Assembly was not in session, it was rumoured that the executive was going to spend the money without any legislative approval.

As the House of Representatives reconvenes, Daily Sun gathered that the request by the executive arm of government for a review of the 2020 budget, as a result of the crash of the price of crude oil, is top on the agenda of the lawmakers. Also, the House is expected to approve a proposal for an N500 billion COVID-19 intervention fund and other legislations that will aid the fight against the pandemic in the country.

A guideline issued by the House, yesterday, indicated that the Green Chamber will sit once in a week (every Tuesday).

 

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