A Former member of the House Representatives from Borno state, Dr. Haruna Yerima has said a former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo gave N50 million bribe to each member of the National Assembly that supported his third term bid.
Dr. Yerima, who stated this at the 34th Aminu Kano Annual Memorial Symposium, held in Kano, said although some members turned down the money, others collected it.
Dr. Yerima, who spoke on ‘Politics after Malam Aminu Kano: The Role of the Legislature in Nigeria’s Democratic Development’ said very few members of the NASS rejected the Obasanjo’s N50m offer.
“In the House of Representatives, I was the only member who rejected the Obasanjo’s third term bid and that what led to my exit from the house,” he recalled.
He lamented that corruption was rooted in the NASS to the extent that it could be difficult to be addressed within a short time.
He said, “there is nothing one can do at the moment to stop corruption in the NASS.”
He also said the major factor aiding corruption at the NASS was that majority of the lawmakers lacked the basic knowledge about the duty and functions of the NASS.
“We have to make our legislative members and senators understand what democracy is all about. We have to make them understand the rules of the house and the constitution even if they cannot read and write.
“I have a colleague who spent 12 years in the NASS but had never seconded a motion not to talk of moving it on the floor of the house.
The problem is that most of our legislatures are attached to their governors and are dancing to their tunes, he said.