WITH a promise that the Ninth Senate will work for the nation’s progress, Senate President Ahmad Lawan yesterday cautioned Nigerians against compromising unity.
He described the constitution of relevant parliamentary committees as a demonstration of National Assembly’s preparedness to work for the nation’s progress.
The Senate President stressed the importance of unity to national development and cohesion.
Lawan spoke yesterday at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, on his return from pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia.
He was received by Senators Barau Jibrin, Michael Opeyemi Bamidele and his Deputy Chief of Staff Mohammed Karage.
Lawan said: “Nigerians should thank God that we are still together. As such, we should work to ensure that the unity of this country is not compromised.”
The Senate President urged Nigerians to continue to pray for their leaders, adding that leaders are supposed to serve the people.
According to him, no leader will like to deliberately fail to perform.
“Also, in times of challenges, like we are going through presently, Nigerians should continue to be behind their leaders with prayers and support backed by understanding. By the Grace of God, Nigeria will reach those great heights we have long prayed for,” Lawan said.
The Senate President reiterated his appeal to the Executive arm of government on the need to be on the same page with the National Assembly to reverse what he called the undesirable trend of the current budget cycle in Nigeria.
He said: “We need to work for a budget that will be passed by the National Assembly by December. That requires that we work assiduously with the Executive arm of government.
“We want to have the budget laid before the National Assembly by the end of September and for the National Assembly to lock up the whole of October this year for budget defence so that it can be processed and passed before we go on Christmas break. It is doable; it is achievable and attainable.
“I’m sure if we are able to achieve that, Nigeria’s economy will witness a boost. Businesses in Nigeria will have something predictable to work with. I believe that together with the Executive arm of government, we should be able to do this as it is fundamental to us in the National Assembly. I’m sure the Executive arm is also looking forward to that.”
A statement by his media adviser, Ola Awoniyi, also quoted Lawan as saying the Ninth National Assembly has been properly constituted, especially with the various committees in place.