The controversy raging over the alleged 2016 budget padding is deepening, as the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, said he cannot be investigated or prosecuted over the allegation levelled against him, by former Appopriation Committee Chairman, Abduraman Jibrin.
Dogara, speaking on the issue at a civil society stakeholder’s forum in Abuja, said there was no basis for the controversy, which he blamed largely on the lack of adequate understanding by Nigerians of the process of budgetting in a presidential democracy.
The Speaker said himself and other members of the National Assembly are empowered by the 1999 constitution to remove or items in the budget bills and cannot be challenged over their decisions.
He added that it took political maturity of the House to work on the 2016 budget bill and passed it for President Buhari’a assent.
Jibrin who accused Dogara of illegally inserting projects not approved at the plenary into the 2016 budget bill, had already reported the issue to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and the police for investigation.