BY OBUTE JAMES
A one time lecturer, former Minority Leader, House of Representatives and ex- Majority Leader, Senate, Senator Mohammed Ali Ndume has formally declared for the office of the Senate Presidency with a nine-point agenda.
Though the leadership of the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC under its Chairman Adams Oshiomhole
under had last week endorsed the Senate Leader, Ahmad Lawan, as the Senate president, Ndume made his decision to contest for the seat of Senate President on Tuesday April 2.
Ndume who is representing Borno South Senatorial District in the nine-point agenda promised to improve upon the performance of the 8th Senate.
He pledged to make the office of the Senate President less attractive by reducing the unnecessary privileges attached to it.
He also promised to uphold the independence of the legislature and expressed his willingness to “work harmoniously and inter-dependently with the executive without undermining the principle of separation of powers.”
Ndume said he would prioritise and ensure the passage of the Constituency Development Bill to make “constituency projects more transparent, accountable, efficient and effective.”
He said the Senate would agree on timelines for confirmation, passage of bills especially the annual budgets, which he said, would not exceed 90 days from the day of submission.
According to him, “We will make laws that will block leakages devise improved means of generating revenue, especially through the amendment and review of our tax laws which will help to reduce reliance on local and foreign loans to finance budget.
“We will run the 9th Senate transparently, through open accountability with full participation of all senators .For example, we will transfer the approving powers of the privileges of the senators like foreign travels, allowances to Senate services committee or a new committee to be known as “ways and means committee.”
He noted that his leadership would uphold the party’s principles and policies and that the Senate under him would make laws and review existing ones in tandem with the APC’s Next Level agenda for Nigeria.