Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Preventing transparency

Imnakoya, writing in his blog, Grandiose Parlor, describes what happens in Nigeria when attempts are made to unearth corruption. Remember what happened to the last effective head of the government's anti-corruption unit? Can you guess which party was in power when the huge and expensive electrification project was started? Do you know how much money was spent on the project? (You know the one that has yet to produce any electricity.)

Legislators refused to debate power probe report!

"Many were elated when the Nigerian House of Representatives decided to investigate the stalled power multi-billion dollar project initiated by former president Obasanjo between 1999 and 2007. The House did its investigation — many of the sessions were broadcast live to Nigerian homes, the investigators even visited the sites for the projects to see things with their eyes. The House closed its investigation and worked on its report.

"The report — several months after it was finished and submitted to the House leadership — was up for debate earlier this week. It didn’t go well, unfortunately.

"234next reported what happened, here are some excerpts:

The report of the committee, which it presented to the House in October last year, came up for debate for two days last week after numerous postponements.

During the debate, most members spoke against the consideration of the report amid rowdiness. While some members wanted the debate halted, others said events had overtaken the recommendations of the report.

It was, however, gathered that members, particularly those of the Peoples Democratic Party wanted the report rejected following the intervention of the party leadership.

"If any is in doubt who the supposed representatives of the people serve, the answer should be clear now.

"Rather than settling down to examine the contents of the report, the House decided to elect another committee to examine the report written by another committee!..."

See also:

What You Need to Know -- a study guide for AP Comparative Government and Politics

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At 11:26 AM, Blogger Ken Wedding said...

Here is another news account of the legislative reaction to the Power Probe Report. This one is from Vanguard (Lagos).

Power Probe Report Splits Reps

"TEMPERS flared yesterday on the floor of the House of Representatives as a clear majority of lawmakers who want the Power Probe Report thrown out, engaged the minority in a showdown.

"But the House found a middle ground as it appointed a seven-man committee to review the recommendations of the Power probe committee, headed by Deputy Chief Whip, Aminu Tambuwal (PDP, Sokoto).

"The Report was tabled for debate on Wednesday after it had been delayed for about six months...

"Yesterday... there were strong disagreements over the validity of the report on the power sector from 1999-2007.

"Those who spoke said though they were members of the Committee, they had no hands in the report and called for the killing of the report. Those who attempted to speak to the contrary were heckled. This forced the House of Representatives to shelve debate on the report..."


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