Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP) has faulted moves by the House of Representatives to grant immunity to lawmakers when the general opinion among Nigerians is for the immunity clause to be removed for the executive arm because of the corruption bazaar in the land.
The CNPP said that the bill which scaled second reading on Thursday is a final move to legalize corruption and destroy the country.
“It is worrisome that the legislative arm which the people recently see as the last bastion in governance is now seeking to get the same criminal protection that the executive gets under the constitutional immunity clause” it said adding, “It is shameful for one to begin to have the inkling that because scandals around some law-makers are yet to go public could be the impetus for this criminal legislation.”
The conference noted that “Instead making legislation to grant immunity to lawmakers, who already have parliamentary immunity anyway; members of the House of Representatives should have intensified efforts to use the ongoing amendment of the Constitution to do way with immunity clause for the president and governors to at least open them up for criminal prosecution for corruption.
“Nigerians are already wary of the official fraud that surrounds how much each lawmaker legitimately earns. What happens to the constituency allowances voted for lawmakers and other money they allegedly corner from performing their oversight functions?
“This latest effort at shielding lawmakers from being held accountable as representatives of the people will only worsen the distrust in which Nigerians hold this class of politicians”. CNPP said.
The group warned the bill has the potential to worsen an already precarious situation and urged the House of Representatives to see reason and desist from the destructive path they have chosen otherwise it will support, mobilize and set up a camp of Nigerians at the National Assembly.