The immediate past Senate President, David Mark on Monday, has stated that the Senate under his watch was on the side of the people and on the side of truth.
He stressed that there was no secrecy with regards to the affairs of the National Assembly. “We stood on the side of the people, the truth, and transparency and above all in the interest of the nation,” he said in a statement issued by his Media Assistant, Mr Paul Mumeh in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital.
Mark also noted that parliamentary practices and procedures dictate that all issues were carried out in the open.
Mark, who was reacting to recent insinuations that the National Assembly budgets and salaries are shrouded in secrecy, maintained that such allegation was borne out of deliberate mischief, blackmail or outright ignorance.
“How can anyone claim that the National Assembly budget is secret, or that our earnings are secret?
“The National Assembly budget is part and parcel of the Federal budget. It is not a separate document.
“If anybody is in doubt, he or she should get a copy of the National budget and clarify.
“It is a public document, unless you are saying you have never seen the National budget.
“It is sad and ridiculous when people give impression that that the National Assembly Budget has continued to be increased annually.
“This is not correct. It is unwarranted and needless accusation,” he said.
Mark said that the National Assembly under his leadership was bold, courageous, steadfast and truly patriotic.
Mark cautioned against reducing critical national matters to politics, and stressed that people should not play politics with serious national issues like appropriations.
“With every sense of responsibility in 2008, the National Assembly under my leadership was the first arm of government to return the N7 billion unspent fund to the national treasury,” he said