Aminu Tambuwal, Speaker of the House of Representatives yesterday reiterated the commitment of the Legislature towards entrenching democracy in the country despite the numerous challenges confronting the institution.
Tambuwal who gave the commitment at the inauguration of the Executive of the House Press Corps in Abuja, reiterated the commitment of the House towards ensuring transparency and accountability.
He said “we are not running a secret cult in the House of Representatives. We are very, very transparent and amenable and we are ready to answer your questions and we are ready to answer all those questions at all times.
“I assure you that we will continue to partner and work together for the sustenance of democracy in Nigeria and enhancement and entrenchment of legislative practice in Nigeria.
“As you know, legislature is one of the three arms of government that is receiving a lot of bashing from members of the public, because members of the public believe that it starts and ends here. Whatever the legislature does, members of the public believe the legislature has the capacity to stop them sometimes from certain actions.
“Of course, you working with us know our limitations. I therefore want to use this medium to urge members of the public to appreciate the constraints of the legislature in Nigeria. We have our constraints though not legal but because of the political challenges in Nigeria.
“Some still believe that the legislature is an unwanted appendage to other arms of government which is not true. Anywhere in the world, without the Legislature, there can be no democracy in any society, because it is the umblica cord of any democratic society without which it cannot stand, so we seek for the continued understanding of the public.”
While stressing the need for synergy between the Legislature and Media towards entrenching democracy, Tambuwal urged media practitioners not to compromise the standard of the profession.
“You’ve been very professional in reporting the House of Representatives. Sometime when I read your report, I begin to wonder whether you are still our friends but I know from inside of me, that it’s a balanced story.
“Sometimes, when I read reports from the House of Representatives in the media, I wonder if you people are still our friends. But when I look critically at what has been reported, I’ll realise that what have been reported are nothing but the facts.
“Members of the House press corps have been very cooperative with us in our constitutional legislative function in a very professional manner to the benefit of the people of Nigeria. We always say that whenever you have any question, approach any member or leadership for clarification on any matter”, he added.
KEHINDE AKINTOLA, Abuja