Fashola’s Ministerial Approval: CACOL Blasts PMB, Senate

The Coalition Against Corrupt (CACOL) has criticized President Muhammadu Buhari and the Nigerian Senate for the ministerial appointment of Babatunde Fashola, a former governor of Lagos state.

by Clement Ejiofor

The CACOL wrote a letter to the president asking him to drop Fashola and other questionable nominees.

Debo Adeniran, the chairman of the group noted: “A person who has questions to answer was approved by the Senate.”

Adeniran described the entire screening exercise as “a joke” and stressed that those who screened questionable ministerial nominees were also corrupt.

“It was a premeditated question and answer session. The moment someone that is meant to be screening starts singing the praises of a candidate, the entire exercise becomes nothing but a joke,” he added.

During the ministerial screening, Fashola was questioned over the N78 million spent on his personal website and N139 million on the drilling of two boreholes. The ex-governor responded by saying he was not in charge of signing cheques or contract award.

However, the CACOL chairman was not satisfied with Fashola’s answer.

“One would have expected that a follow-up question be asked – as to what his responsibilities were, as the chief executive and chief accounting officer of the state if he would not be answerable to monies spent by his administration for whatever purpose,”he said.

According to Adeniran, the fact that Fashola has been endorsed by the Senate does not mean that he is clean.

“We would recall that all the corrupt ministers that served under the Peoples Democratic Party, for the entire 16 years, were similarly screened and endorsed by the Senate.

“This is exactly what the late Fela had rightly described as paddy-paddy arrangement. They have had their way but we will continue to have our say. The fact that a person is confirmed by the Senate doesn’t mean he is not corrupt,” he said.

After the announcement of the ministerial nominees, the CACOL also petitioned the Senate against the nomination of Fashola.

The petition dated October 3 asked the Senate not to confirm the former Lagos boss if his name eventually appeared on the list, stressing that the legislative arm should visit Lagos first before screening Fashola.