Friday, October 4, 2019

Okorocha calls for drastic reduction in the number of legislators in the National Assembly

The cost-saving campaign of the Federal Government won a convert in Senator Rochas Okorocha, who, on Thursday, called for a drastic reduction in the number of legislators in the National Assembly.

Okorocha, representing Imo West, proposed the reduction as part of efforts to reduce cost of governance while contributing to debate on the Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper (MTEF/FSP) at plenary.

According to him, states can do with a senator and three House of Representatives members each.


The former Imo governor gave his views in a chat with the press corps after he raised the issue on the floor of the Red Chamber.

Okorocha regretted that the nation can no longer generate adequate to fund its development, hence the need to reform the country in unusual terms.

The senator plans to sponsor a bill to that effect in the Senate at the appropriate time.

He said: “I do not know what we are doing differently today in the ninth senate from what you did in the eighth Senate and the Seventh Senate and other previous Senate.

“If what we are doing today is similar to what have been doing in the past then be rest assured that the product will be the same.

“Mr. Senate President, change your ways, change your styles, let’s change our style and if we change our style, we get a new result. How do we change our style?

“We are the pivot upon which the wheel of government must rotate. Sometimes we blame the executive and judiciary but it is what we give to the executive they will do. They are waiting for us.

“The failure of the budget or the success of the budget depends on this. What do we have differently? The problem that we have now is money but we do not have money for our needs and to support the needs of Nigeria which is to create jobs and put food on the table.”

“This arises from the fact that we depend on one source of income called oil, this same oil constitute over 60 per cent of our revenue apart from Customs and 90 per cent of our foreign reserve.

“This same oil is static and fast reducing while the population of Nigeria is increasing in geometrical progression. So oil cannot meet it.

“A people like us should look inward. So, let us cut our coats according to our available material not according to our size.

“Let me give you a typical example on how to run this year’s budget to achieve our target equal.

“Here we have three senators per state. In that National Assembly over there (House of Reps) there are over 360 eligible human beings in this small building.

“This country must begin to make sacrifices and cut down on the cost of governance we must start it, painful as it may be.

“Now our Constitution provides that we have three Senators per state. What will the three Senators per state be doing that one Senator per state cannot do?

“What are we doing in the House of Representatives with over 360 members and each of these persons create demands on the system. We must cut down on the cost of governance.

“What we need to have under the present ugly situation which our Constitution forced on us is to have one Senator per state and three members of the House of Representatives per state.

“And secondly the budget should be skewed to fund the productive sector of the economy. Government is business,” he said.

Okorocha quoted Senate President Ahmed Lawan as saying in his response: “Your contribution could be translated into a bill if you want a state to have only a senator, it requires a constitutional amendment.

“So, you have the opportunity to present a bill for the amendment of the relevant sections of the Constitution which provides for three senators per state.

“I think my personal opinion is that the National Assembly and the legislators are tasked to think deep and wide on how we can increase revenue no matter how big or small and prudently and efficiently applied.

“That requires total, comprehensive and holistic oversight of the executive arm of government. This we must do and we must not fail in that.”

3 comments:

  1. He is right. But he has to return home too

    ReplyDelete

  2. They should reduce their allowances and not the number of senators

    ReplyDelete