The House of Representatives has refuted media claims suggesting that its members were provided with N100 million in palliative funds by the executive branch of the government.
In a statement issued Wednesday, Akin Rotimi, the spokesperson of the House, said they were compelled to respond following the media reports credited to the National Assistant General Secretary of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Mr Christopher Onyeka, who claimed that the executive arm had given N100 million to National Assembly members as palliatives.
Describing the claim as baseless and devoid of any factual accuracy, he said:
“Transparency and truth in public discourse are necessary for a functioning democracy. While we doubt that Mr Onyeka was actually conveying the official position of the NLC on this claim, it is nonetheless important to correct such misinformation.
“We state categorically that Mr Onyeka lied in his claim that National Assembly members were given N100 million as palliatives. For the avoidance of doubt, at no time did members of the House of Representatives receive any money from the executive arm as palliatives. We, therefore, consider this statement malicious, irresponsible, and in bad faith.
“We consider it irresponsible and most unfortunate that Mr Onyeka would misrepresent facts in a bid to lend credence to otherwise valid demands of the NLC while seeking to denigrate the National Assembly and inciting the public against the institution.”
The spokesperson stressed that NLC, as a critical stakeholder in the development of Nigeria, has a voice, and it risks delegitimising that voice if it is found to include fables in its legitimate agitations.
The House subsequently demanded an immediate retraction of this “lie” and a public apology from NLC.