The decision of the Comptroller-General of Customs Hameed Ali not to appear before the Senate on Wednesday as earlier agreed has continued to generate mixed feelings among the Senators.
Senators have been insisting that the Comptroller-General should appear “in uniform” to explain the planned enforcement of duty collection on old vehicles.
Col. Ali told reporters in Abuja on Tuesday that he would stay away from the Senate in deference to a court order.
Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice Abubakar Malami also wrote to the Senate, urging it to suspend its invitation to the Customs CG because of the court matter.
But the Senate insisted that no court could stop it from carrying out its constitutional duty. A source said the lawmakers might consider issuing a warrant for Col. Ali’s arrest.
Col. Ali told reporters after attending a meeting at the Presidential Villa that “the case is in court already”.
”Somebody has sued us. It is subjudice. I have got my writ of summons and they said status quo ante should remain, which means nothing should move until the court makes a pronouncement,” he said, adding:
“A private individual sued all of us; he wants an interpretation of the section that is in contention. I don’t want to talk so that I am not held in contempt of court.”
Meanwhile, chairman, Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi, confirmed the receipt of the AGF letter. “There is a communication, although I have not seen the content. So, I won’t be able to make any categorical comment on it, “he said and insisted that the court had no power to stop the Senate from conducting its constitutional duty.