Author Topic: Rifts Between Lamido Sanusi and the Nigerian Senate  (Read 4975 times)


Rifts Between Lamido Sanusi and the Nigerian Senate
« on: Dec 05, 2010, 09:01 PM »
“Only education makes a man see as profit any loss resulting from his acting according to the dictates of his conscience, and to see as a loss any profit gained from betraying his conscience”---Aristotle (384-322 BC).

“No intelligent man would consent to be a fool, no instructed person would be an ignoramus, no person of feeling and conscience would be selfish and base, even though they should be persuaded that the fool, the dunce, or the rascal is better satisfied with his lot than they are with theirs”---John Stuart Mill (1806-1873).

Once again the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria has been thrown into an ostensibly new vista of squabble as Nigeria and Nigerians seem to have tossed, yet another discerning contempt on the so-called hallowed (or is it profane?) chambers of the National Assembly aka NASS. This is in effect to the recent utterances of the bold, courageous, firebrand, radical, intellectual, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor at the lately held 8th Convocation ceremony of the Igbinedion University on November 27, 2010 in Okada, Edo State.

Lamido Sanusi while delivering his Convocation lecture bluntly said the National Assembly (with its constituent upper and lower legislative chambers) collects 25 percent of government funds. This stirred a hullabaloo of sorts when the National Assembly felt that the CBN Governor’s figures were two-timing and disingenuous, stating that only 3.5 percent of the nation’s overhead funds are carted away to them. Hence the CBN Governor was summoned by the Senate to appear at the National Assembly and was asked to tender a public apology before a panel on Appropriations, Banking and Currency.
However, even though it is evident that the National Assembly and some of her members have dissipated dangerously close to nothing but a group of outlandish, sentiment-driven, coarse-styled, crackpots (apologies to the honest and revered members of this assembly), these people try to persuade and sway Nigerians into believing that they are actually representing the true interests of the people that “elected” them to their tenures. The run-off-the-mill politicians who get paid to no copious limit, for their bench-warming attitudes and for reveling in recesses at recurring intervals, are capable of descending insalubriously to the crux of bestiality only to castigate whoever that dares to challenge the legitimacy of the congenial sumptuousness of their ill-gotten mammon.

Lamido Sanusi therefore, shouldn’t be an exception. Gratefully, being carefully-tended and sharp-witted, the CBN Governor did not stop at saying he is unwilling to apologize except otherwise convinced beyond doubt that he was actually guilty of misleading his audience. In his defence, he opened up and admitted that: “25 percent of overheads of the Federal Government goes to the NASS” and backed up his argument by referring the National Assembly members to “page 861” of the 2010 Appropriation Act that was obtained from the Budget Office. But even with this, the panel insisted and tried to offer the Governor bait for him to apologize. This should call for a nerve-racking concern: Why would a Senate committee insist that one should apologize for what is palpably nothing? The Senate ought to know and understand that this matter is now beyond the Governor as he has clearly exculpated and acquitted himself using the most civil of styles. Lamido Sanusi should therefore be congratulated for his research, if for nothing but opening up a false (if it is false) paradigm that had lain unflustered in the Budget Office prior to this topical review.

The battle therefore is not one between the National Assembly and Lamido Sanusi, but between the National Assembly and the Budget Office. Being an integral agency of the executive whose budgetary functions include helping in the preparation and administration of the national budget as well as the formulation of the nation’s overall pecuniary program, the Budget Office should be called to sit with the Senate and explain to Nigerians why there is a such wide parity of difference between the figures presented by the Senate committee on the one hand, and the Budget Office on the other. If one among the party gets it right or wrong as the case may be, then the other is put to either unpretentiousness or disrepute/infamy.

In any event, the CBN Governor, or the CBN as a corporate agency that he represents, should be free of any impugns. His only fault (if it is a fault), is that he has made an honest research by quoting a figure, and be able to effectively map out the provenance of such figure when asked about it. By insisting that Lamido Sanusi is guilty, the National Assembly will, at their jeopardy, prove to Nigerians how brainless and obtuse they can be reduced to. It should be dispassionately comprehended that if one writes a paper, and in it quotes a certain government agency to have said so-and-so, it should be the agency that is held responsible, not the writer! Otherwise the objective of citing and alluding to references when writing would be utterly defeated. If the Senate couldn’t understand this, it is never too late for them to take a sensitization or perhaps a refresher course on “referencing” and “information retrieval” as a telltale advantage. It will do them a whole lot of good. For now I dare say, Lamido Sanusi is not guilty and his accusers owe him a cri-de-coeur until they are able to come up with a superfluously more defensible reproach.

The following words of Lamido Sanusi (Google “The Kano Government and Ajino-Moto Economics, Sept. 04, 2001”) are most edifying, (emphasis mine):
“…dealing with educated critics is not the same as dealing with illiterates…education makes a man free, and freedom demystifies the trappings of authority…education gives one the capacity to reply every insult, revenge every injury and stand firm on principle”
The Senate should take note!

Mohammed Dahiru Aminu writes from Dougirei South, Yola; Nigeria. He can be reached at
December 1, 2010.