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I Will Not Resign, Budget Padding is Not an offence - Dogara


Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara and three other leaders of the lower chamber have been accused by the former Chairman of the House of Appropriations Committee, Abdulmumin Jibrin, of "padding" the 2016 budget to the tune of hundreds of billions of naira.
However, answering questions from state house correspondents after private meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday, Dogara said "budget padding" is not an offence, hence he won't resign.

When asked why he was visiting the president on a Friday, Dogara said: "I can't come and see my president?
"Do I need any reason to come and see my president. It's a private visit."
When asked if he discussed the alleged budget padding with the president, he replied with a question of his own: "What is budget padding?"
He was reminded that the language emanated from the lower chamber, he replied: "I don't know; educate me.
"I am lawyer and the speaker, and I have never heard of the word padding. What does 'padding' mean?
He was also reminded that Jibrin was accusing him of padding the budget, but he said: "Ask him, he who alleges must prove; that's the law in Nigeria."

The rest of his conversation went:
Journalists: Are you not going to defend yourself?
Dogara: Am I before a court?
Journalists: There are people saying you should reconvene the house before September resumption time and step aside for thorough investigations.
Dogara: We have rules and regulations. This is not a mock institution; we operate by rules and we will follow the rules.‎
Journalists: Will you resign?
Dogara: Resign for what? For what?
Journalists: On this allegations?
Dogara: What are the allegations?
Journalists: That you and some members of the leadership padded the budget?
Dogara: What is padding? You haven't told me. Ask Jibrin what padding is. For me, I studied law and I have been in the legislature and all this period I have never heard of the word 'padding' being an offence under any law. If I don't know, you are the media; research the law and let me know.
Journalists: Are you worried?
Dogara: Worried for what? Worried over nothing. Why should I be worried? As far as I am concerned, I'm not worried over anything.
Journalists: Will there be sanctions against Jibrin?
Dogara: I am not the chairman of ethics committee of the house so I wouldn't know and I don't know what 'padding' means.

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