THE Nigerian Senate has challenged Cairo Ojougboh, Director of Projects at the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to provide evidence to prove his allegation that senators in the ninth Assembly received N20 million as COVID-19 relief fund from the Commission.
“The Senate views with grave concern a statement credited to Dr Cairo Ojougboh, Executive Director, Projects of the NDDC who alleged that NASS members received varying sums of money as COVID – 19 palliative, the Senate hereby disclaims the allegation in its entirety,” the Senate said in a statement issued on Tuesday by Ajibola Basiru, its spokesperson.
“The Senate challenges Dr Ojougboh to publicly provide evidence of his claim and list the names of the Senators he allegedly gave the alleged sum.”
Denying the claim, the Senate said no amount was collected from the NDDC for COIVD-19 relief or any other purpose.
“The Senate categorically denies that any Senator collected the sum of N20 million or any sum whatsoever from NDDC as COVID-19 relief fund of for any purpose whatsoever,” the statement further read.
The Upper Chamber further stated that failure to publicly publish the evidence of such payment, the statement by Ojougboh should be retracted and a public apology should be made.
Ojougboh had in an interview said members of the Senate and House of the Representatives received COVID-19 relief fund.
According to him, senators received N20 million while the House of Representatives received N15 million each.
“In the National Assembly, each of the senators got N20 million, while the House of Representatives members got N15 million for COVID-19 from the National Assembly. They all received COVID19 allowances,” Ojougboh had said.