The senate on Tuesday threatened to invoke its constitutional powers in compelling Abubakar Malami, attorney-general of the federation and minister of justice, to appear before it.
On two occasions — June 21 and June 30 — failed to appear before the senate’s committee on judiciary, human rights and legal matters to explain the rationale behind the forgery charges against Bukola Saraki, the senate president and his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu.
On one of those occasions, the senate walked out a representative of the AGF.
Saraki’s ruling was sequel to a point of order raised by David Umaru, chairman of the committee who informed the senate that Malami had expressed regrets and was seeking another chance to appear before the aforementioned committee.
Expressing his displeasure over the action of Malami, Umaru had said: “The purpose of this hearing was to defend Nigeria’s democracy but the attorney-general has faulted the invitation of the senate again.”
Also speaking, a member of the committee, Chukwuka Utazi, described the action of the AGF as a slap in the face of the senate.
“This is a slap in the face of the senate as the AGF has refused to appear before the committee after being summoned,” he had said. “We just want to ask the AGF a few questions to clarify all these issues, but he has failed to respond to our invitation.”
On June 21, the upper legislative chamber had summoned Malami, but he also failed to honour the invitation.
Following his refusal to appear before the senate, the senate president On Tuesday mulled invoking a relevant session of the senate’s rules to comply him to honour the invitation.
But just hours after the threat, Malami came knocking and held secret meeting with the senate president at the National Assembly.