No legislature-executive rift, Presidency says
The Presidency on Thursday said that the seeming disagreement between the legislature and the executive was a normal phenomenon in a democracy and should not be misconstrued as a rift.
Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly matters (Senate), Senator Ita Enang while addressing State House Correspondents explained that the two arms are both working together for the benefit of the people.
“You have seen at many times the President of the Senate and even the Speaker of the House of Representatives coming to have personal interactions and briefing the President of the affairs of the legislature and other functions of the state.
“It appears that because of some incidences on the screening of some nominees, people think there are tensions. But let me assure you that the was no tension.
“It is only that the constitution requires that when the President makes a nomination to the legislature, the legislature is to screen, consider and approve as thought fit. If the legislature has reason to have reservations, there is always consultation. It will make its opinion known to the Executive by way of appropriate communication.
“Even if it appeared in the past that there were tensions, the actions of this week: the consultations between the President and the leaders of the National Assembly have doused all.
Further, Enang stated that what seems to be the tension between the Legislature and the Executive was inevitable, a development he said should be interpreted as an exercise of checks and balances needed to strengthen and allow democracy to thrive.
He said, “the relationship between the legislature and the executive is cordial, constitutional and usual.
“The leadership of the National Assembly always show support whenever there are events and functions organised by the executive that require their presence.”
“Legislators represent the people and they bring up reflections, opinions of people that they represent, sometimes when this happens, it appears as if there is tension,” Enang said.
According to the former lawmaker, the committee set up by President Muhammadu Buhari to look into the relationship between the legislature and executive was to ensure that if there was any tension between the two arms of government, it should be addressed in all ramifications.
”Even if it appeared in the past that there were tensions, the actions of this week: the consultations between the President and the leaders of the National Assembly have doused all.
“The intervention of the National Working Committee of the APC-led by the National chairman has again completely put the question of tension or discord at rest. That too has further brought down what it appeared to be tension.
“In all the issues that have arisen, no question is raised by the Legislature against the action of the President. It shows that in all manners, the President has not done anything that will make the legislature to call him to question.
“At anytime you will find the Legislature hands in gloves with the Executive without the Executive raising questions or the Legislature asking questions, then the public should be worried.
“That is why we have separation of powers. Each of them should check each other. When these checks arise, that is when the public feels there is tension. There is absolutely no tension,” he said.