Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA) has challenged the various committees of the House of Representatives to desist from incessant summoning of CEOs of companies to appear before them, pending the determination of suits the employers’ body instituted against the legislature in this regard.
NECA said while the House of Representatives generally, by its activities, was putting the wheel of economy growth in a reverse gear, its various committees had constituted themselves into ‘Lord of Manor’ and obviously working against the Federal Government’s ease of doing policy.
Segun Oshinowo, director-general of NECA, who addressed the media in Lagos, Tuesday, accused the House committees of continuing to summon and threaten CEOs with warrant of arrest under the guise of oversight roles.
He listed the committees to include Committee on Labour, Employment and Productivity; Committee on Steel; Committee on Telecommunications; Committee on Public Safety and National Security; Ad-Hoc Committee on the Abuse of Pioneer Status by Companies, Ad-Hoc Committee Investigating Operational Activities of Telecommunications Equipment and Service Companies/Vendors in Nigeria, among others.
NECA had in 2013 instituted a case against the House Committee on Finance, a case currently at the Appeal Court, and Joint House Committee on Interior, Labour and Productivity, in 2012, with the case now at the Supreme Court, challenging the committees’ powers to investigate the abuse of expatriate quotas.
The employers’ body, which has consistently lamented and condemned the disruption of businesses by the over-reaching posture of the lawmakers, is seeking the court to determine “The scope and extent of the constitutionality of investigatory authority/powers of the lawmakers in Sections 88 and 89 of the 1999 Constitution”.
NECA is also expecting the court to determine “Under what circumstance can the legislators exercise oversight power on companies in the private sector? And to what extent would it entail usurpation of the responsibilities of the executive arm of government and the agencies, and the legislature can delegate or outsource its roles to a consultant?
NECA is asking the court to determine “Whether the National Assembly is empowered under Sections 88 and 89 of the constitution to invite and investigate any person and for what purpose, and to what extent?