The Lagos State House Assembly yesterday insisted that Governor Akinwunmi Ambode and some of his commissioners it invited to explain infractions on this year’s budget must appear before it.
The Assembly said should the infractions continue, it would apply constitutional provisions for punitive measure: impeachment.
Majority Leader Sanai Agunbiade addressed reporters last night after an emergency parliamentary meeting by the lawmakers.
The lawmaker said nobody was witch-hunting the governor, as being insinuated in some quarters, but that the infractions were serious issues the Assembly could not overlook.
He said the Assembly decided to debunk the wrong information and misconception being bandied around over the Assembly’s resolutions on Ambode last Monday.
There was a massive protest yesterday at the Assembly by concerned Lagosians against the planned impeachment of the governor.
The situation compelled the lawmakers to go into an emergency parliamentary meeting after the protest.
Referring to the protest, Agunbiade said the Assembly was not saying Ambode should end his tenure but that because of issues surrounding the budget, he was summoned by the Assembly.
According to him, the major contention is that he had started spending from this year’s budget, which has not been laid before the Assembly.
Agunbiade insisted that such action was against constitutional provisions.
He added: “The budget is supposed to have been laid before the commencement of another fiscal year. This has always been the practice in the state. Unless it is laid, you cannot spend from it. But the governor has made expenditure from the budget.
“There are also some infractions the Assembly observed about the 2018 budget, the expenditure made outside the budget, which necessitated the invitation the Assembly extended to him and some commissioners to explain things.
“It is not witch-hunting, as some people believe. To make expenditure from the budget, you must have laid it before the Assembly. For now, we don’t have the budget. So, you can’t spend. As legislators, we must do things properly.”
Agunbiade also corrected some misconceptions, which he said were being tied to the Ambode issue.
The lawmaker said it was not true that the Assembly was after Ambode because he refused to fund their campaign.
“We want Lagos to flourish, but we cannot compromise the regulations or constitutional provisions concerning appropriation.