2018 Budget adjustments: Protesters block NASS entrance
July 3, 2018
A group identified as Citizens Actions to Take Back Nigeria on Tuesday thronged the entrance of the National Assembly (NASS) Complex to protest against adjustments made in the 2018 Appropriation Act by the legislature.
The protesters arrived in 11 luxury busses, popularly known as “El-rufai bus”, played music and sang.
They called for the resignation of the President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki.
They carried placards which read: “Constituency projects is now corruption, it must stop”; “Nigerians are not represented in the sharing of the loot via constituency projects”; “National Assembly not for armed runners,” among others.
Security personnel shut the main gate to the complex to prevent the protesters from entering the premises while the protesters tried to force their way in.
As a result, visitors and workers were denied entry through the gate and they had to seek alternative routes.
The convener of the group, Mr Ibrahim Wala, said that members of NASS no longer represented the people of Nigeria.
He said that many adjustments and introductions of several projects in to the 2018 Appropriation Act by the legislature necessitated the protest.
Wala said that constituency projects should be implemented in all constituencies.
He alleged that the members connived with contractors to collect money but failed to execute projects that would have benefited the citizens.
According to him, since 2004, constituency projects have been appropriated for but nothing has changed.
“The worst of it is what we are seeing in the 2018 budget, these people inserted thousands of items.
“We are here representing the entire citizens of this country; the crowd you see here represents the voices of Nigerians.
“Nigerians want a situation whereby when we vote individuals into office they should work with the people and not represent their own interests,” he said.
He urged the security personnel at the gate not to deprive the people of their right to access the premises in peaceful protest.
According to Wala, the group is made up of young women and men that are concerned with the affairs of the country.
No member of NASS was available to address the protesters.
The assembly resumed on Tuesday after a three-week recess.