Thu, 18 Jul 2024


Renovation of Senate chamber was poorly done - Ndume
By: Abara Blessing Oluchi
Wed, 8 May 2024   ||   Nigeria,

Senate Chief Whip, Ali Ndume has said that the renovation of the Red Chamber was poorly done because it looks like a conference room.

Recall that both chambers of the National Assembly had undergone a renovation that lasted about two years.

Lawmakers had to use temporary venues for plenary and committee hearings while the renovation, which cost N42 billion, lasted.

Speaking on the floor of the Senate on Tuesday, Senator Ndume said there was no electronic voting device, and the speakers in the chamber were not audible.

The Borno South Senator likened the Red Chamber to a “conference room”, saying that the renovation needs to be corrected.

He said: “This is not a chamber, it is like a conference room.

“You will not even know that it is me, Ndume, that is speaking, so also when the leader was speaking.

“We need to correct this. We need to change so many things. Like the sitting row, if you want to stand up, you will have to use tactics or strategy to stand up or sit down.

“There is no voting device here. If we are to vote electronically, the facilities are not there, but we had that previously.

“There is no clock here for senators to see the time. Okay, they are trying to show me and I am looking for it, it is not even clear. There used to be a big one.

“This is a serious observation. If you play back the record, you cannot identify Akpabio’s voice, you have to listen hard, but the audio is supposed to be very clear.”

In his response, Senate President Godswill Akpabio said the contract for the renovation of the national assembly was awarded during the tenure of former Senate President, Ahmad Lawan.

Akpabio said there is a need for the national assembly to own the complex, instead of ceding ownership to the FCT administration.

He said: “This is not our contract, it was a contract that was awarded in the ninth senate.

“It is the FCDA (Federal Capital Development Authority) that renovated it. If we have a complaint, we have to channel it to the FCDA.”

This comes days after the lawmakers had a disagreement over the sitting arrangement in the refurbished Red Chamber, which the Senate leadership denied.


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