Pension Scam: Choose Between Maina And Us, Senate Warns Jonathan
The Senate on Wednesday threatened a showdown with President Goodluck Jonathan over the retention of Abdulrasheed Maina as the Chairman of the Pension Reform Task Team.
The Senate President David Mark warned that the executive has to choose between Mr Maina and the Senate.
The Federal lawmakers are incensed over the repeated refusal of Mr Maina to appear before its committee investigating pension administration to answer allegations of his involvement in a N195 billion pension scam.
All the 180 senators at plenary signed the motion for the removal of Mr Maina as the head of the Pension Reform Task Team.
The cat and mouse game between the senate committee investigating the chairman of the pension reform task team has dragged on for almost a year.
The committee had been investigating pension administration in the country and had accused Mr Maina of being involved in a N195 billion pension scam.
Attempts by the committee to get Mr Maina to appear before it to account for the administration of pension funds were never fruitful.
The Senate then ordered that Mr Maina be arrested, following allegations that the task team which he led misappropriated part of the monies it recovered from pension thieves and his refusal to heed the Senateâ€™s summons on the issue.
Mr Maina had said repeatedly that he did not misappropriate any of the pension loot his team recovered, stating that neither he nor his committee had access to the funds which, according to him, had been in the custody of the Federal Government. He is also claiming that the Senate Committee on Pension denied him fair hearing during its sitting, a situation he said amounted to dispensation of unclad injustice and severe persecution being meted to him by the committee.
The Lawmakers recommended that Mr Maina be dismissed from public service, investigated and prosecuted.
They also recommended that the Inspector General of police appear before the senate to explain why he did not act on the arrest warrant earlier issued by the senate president.
This is not the first time federal lawmakers are giving the president an ultimatum.
The House of Representatives had issued this same ultimatum to the president for the dismissal of the Director General of the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) Aruma Oteh.
All eyes are now on the executive to see whether it will act on the resolution of the senate.