Senate berates Fashola for ‘ignoring’ invitation on FERMA

Mr. Babatunde Fashola

Leke Baiyewu, Abuja

Senate Committee on Federal Roads Maintenance Agency, on Thursday, berated Minister of Works, Power and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN) for allegedly shunning its invitation to a roundtable of the affairs of the agency.

Chairman of the committee, Senator Magnus Abe, while expressing his anger over Fashola’s non-appearance, said it was unacceptable for the minister not to honour the invitation by the lawmakers when he was duly invited.

He asked secretary of the committee if she received any communication from Fashola. The secretary said no.

She, however, noted that the invitation sent to Fashola was duly acknowledged.

Abe in his reaction, said he was becoming worried by “the signals” from officials of the Federal Government.

He stated that the National Assembly had the core mandate to invite heads of MDAs for interaction.

Abe said, “For the minister and the permanent secretary to so casually ignore the invitation of the Senate is simply worrisome.”

The lawmaker said it was important for heads of ministries, departments and agencies to accept the National Assembly as part of the Federal Government.

He said if there was any reason for Fashola to be absent from the meeting, he should have communicated it to the committee officially, since he was invited as such.

The lawmaker said Fashola and the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Works were invited in their capacities as heads of the supervising ministry of FERMA. He, however, said it was unfortunate that Fashola and the Permanent Secretary failed to honour the invitation to discuss the issues affecting FERMA.

He, however, commended the management of FERMA for compiling and furnishing the committee with a comprehensive report of its 2016 capital budget.

Abe, while saying the committee would give another date for the minister and the permanent secretary to appear, added, “In the light of the foregoing, I suggest that we adjourn to give the minister time to come.”

Source: Punch News