Another dimension has been introduced into the 2016 Budget padding controversy as the Senior Special Assistant to President Buhari on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Ita Enang has said there is nothing like padding in the legislature.
“In all our years of legislative engagement, we have yet to find in the legislative lexicon the word, ‘padding.’ When the budget is presented before the legislature, the legislature is to consider the budget and pass as it deems fit.
“So, what the legislature passes becomes the Appropriation Act upon assent. Therefore, any word which has yet to crystallise in legislative lexicon, you cannot hear us mention it,” he said.
It is instructive to note that Senator Enang’s comment on the issue came after he appeared before the All Progressives Congress (APC) leadership to state the Presidency’s stand in the budget padding scandal rocking the House of Representatives.
The Street Reporters recall that the Speaker of the House, Yakubu Dogara, who was at the centre of the controversy also denied knowledge of the meaning of the word “Padding”, just after a meeting with President Mohammadu Buhari last Friday.
Speaking further, Enang said “We have given explanation on every issue. There is nothing, to our knowledge, like padding of the budget.
“The budget, as assented to by the President, is the budget passed by the National Assembly and it is being executed. For now, the party is handling it as a domestic issue; a party issue.
“All of us have been told not to make public comments because the matter is still under consideration.
“We will not want to go into the details so that we will not breach the party’s directive or pre-empt the outcome of the party’s probe’’, he said.