James Faleke Disrupts Budget Defense Over Picture

A House of Representatives member, Hon. James Faleke temporarily stalled the budget defence of the Energy Commission of Nigeria, ECN, yesterday when he ordered the seizure of a phone snapshot taken on him at the budget session.

The Chairman of the House Committee on Science and Technology, Hon Beni Lar was seated with other lawmakers examining the budget figures of the commission when a snapshot flashed on Faleke who immediately called for the head of the photographer.

He was livid at the photo shot taken at him with a phone camera and quickly ordered that the phone be seized by the Committee secretariat staff and brought to him at the budget session.

It would be recalled that Faleke contested the Kogi State gubernatorial election as running mate to the late Prince Abubakar Audu who was the All Progressive Congress’s governorship candidate but died before an election he was already leading in. The election was declared inconclusive by INEC.

Faleke had since then insisted that he should be the one to inherit the votes cast for the joint ticket, even as he rejected the decision of the All Progressives Congress, APC, leadership to pick Yahaya Bello as Audu’s replacement. He refused to make himself available for the January 27 swearing in of Bello as the Governor of Kogi State.

In the drama that ensued during the budget defence session, Faleke insisted on getting to the root of the matter as to why his picture was taken without his consent.

This led a staff of the ECN, Mr Bala Mohammed to own up, explaining that he unknowingly too the photo shot. He quickly apologized to the enraged lawmaker, saying that he mistakenly took the photograph with his malfunctioning android phone. He added that it was in an attempt to switch-on the phone, which he noticed had switched-off that led to the snapshot.

Eventually, Faleke soft-pedaled on his request for the seizure of the phone as he requested that the erring staff delete all his recent photoshots, which the civil servant willingly did


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