Senator representing Kogi West, Dino Melaye, on Friday assured his counterpart from Borno South, Senator Ali Ndume that the Senate President, Bukola Saraki will reduce his punishment should he tender an apology to the Upper Legislative Chambers.
The Senate had earlier in the week suspended Ndume for six months over his call for the probe of Saraki and Melaye, who were later cleared of any wrongdoing.
The Borno Senator had raised a point of order during a recent plenary session, stressing that the reputation of the senate was at stake based on allegations levelled against Saraki and Melaye
However, the Senate Committee on Ethics and Privileges recommended Ndume’s suspension for failing to authenticate the allegations before calling for the probe of his colleagues.
The committee also cleared both Saraki and Melaye of any wrong doing.
But, Melaye while featuring on Channels Television programme, Politics Today, said the decision to suspend Ndume was that of the Senate and not his and Saraki.
According to Melaye, “Senator Ndume is an experienced legislator, having been in the house of representatives for two terms, and this being his second term in the senate.
“I didn’t prophecy that he would be suspended, or did Bukola Saraki, who was wrongly accused. We are not the ones who make up the senate. Ndume should understand the workings of the national assembly. The senate is made up of 109 members.
“So, the decision to suspend Ndume was not that of Saraki or myself, but the decision of the Nigerian senate after investigation by the relevant committees… We have a very responsible senate president, a very compassionate Nigerian who does not believe in witch-hunting.
“Already, there is a lot of pressure, and people are appealing to the person of Bukola Saraki, and I can say on good authority that if Saraki had presided over Ndume’s case, he may not have been suspended because the senate president is a compassionate character. So, if Ndume shows remorse, apologise to the senate, the Bukola Saraki that I know will persuade members to either reduce his punishment or forgive him.”
He also disagreed with those who said Ndume was not given fair hearing.
“The senate has the capacity to suspend any erring senator, but what we are saying here is very clear, due process was followed.
“Ali Ndume was given fair hearing. He appeared before the committee, he defended himself before the committee gave that recommendation, which was ratified by the entire senate”, he said. Daily Post