Committee Chairman, Senator Ayo Akinyelure, had during the 2022 budget defence of the Tribunal bemoaned the meagre appropriation, wondering how CCT couldn’t be funded enough like other anti-corruption agencies in Nigeria.
Senator Akinyelure after listened to the budget performance of CCT for the year, 2021 and the projection for 2022, noted that the All Progressives Congress (APC) has a core agenda of tackling corruption which the CCT was strategic, insisting that the budget envelope was too small for effective operation of the agency.
The lawmaker wondered how the Tribunal that was supposed to serve the entire country with public officers working in over 900 agencies of government be so underfunded at a time that erring public servants should be made to account for their deeds.
The lawmaker insisted: “You must determine all the cases referred to you and let Mr President know that you are promoting his anti corruption agenda.
“Your silence over the meagre allocation to your agency to fight corruption is not good enough for the government of President Muhammadu Buhari.”
The sum of N232 million was appropriated to CCT in 2021 out of which N174.2m was released, according to the document submitted to the Committee.
The position of the Committee was opposed to reports in some media outlets that the Senate Committee carpets CCT for allegedly ignoring corruption cases forwarded to it by the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCB).
In a statement by the CCT spokesperson, Atekojo Samson Usman on Friday in Abuja, quoted the CCT Chairman, Justice Danladi Umar to have told the Senate panel that 257 cases were referred to CCT, out of which 57 have been treated with 30 concluded.
Justice Umar had during the budget defence explained the challenges of under funding even as CCT is the only Court in Nigeria that sits and determines cases with its nationwide jurisdiction.
Justice Umar maintained: “We have not been able to deal with all the cases referred to us due to underfunding. The CCT is only one body and we have to go to different places in the country.
“If we have another division of the Tribunal in the six geopolitical zones, it will reduce the enormity of our work here in Abuja. We cannot be everywhere.”
Neither the Senate panel nor CCB accused CCT of ignoring corruption cases referred to as portrayed in some sections of the media.
Senator Akinyelure while canvassing for proper funding of CCT said: “The CCT needed more resources to deliver and under Ahmed Lawan’s Senate Presidency, we want to work in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration to work significantly before his term ends, for the country to be handed to another democratically elected President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The Senate panel further told the CCT Chairman to submit a request demanding for more resources with a proof of what they want to procure that would aid the workings of the Court in 2022 for approval.
He stated further: “So we give you two days to come up with a request to the National Assembly with a justification to enable us to present a position paper that will enable us to support you.”
Meanwhile, the CCT boss in his presentation added that there was no judgement debt liability occasioned by his court sittings as he has been strictly following due process in adjudicating on cases brought before it by the Code of Conduct Bureau.
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