Former Governor of Rivers State Rotimi Amaechi was Thursday screened by the Nigerian Senate as a ministerial nominee.
He was the first of the six nominees slated for screening Thursday. He was followed by Heineken Lokpobiri.
Amaechi spent about 50 minutes answering questions bordering on various issues, especially his alleged indictment by a panel by the Rivers State Government for corruption, insisting that he was never indicted and dangled the report before the Senate.
The Senate Ethics committee report that delayed in screening on three occasions, was presented to the senate by Senator Anyanwu, head of the committee, before Amaechi’s screening.
Senate majority leader, Senator Ali Ndume had hinted yesterday that the report may not necessarily hinder the exercise and that APC senators are prepared to support Amaechi. The APC has a clear majority in the Senate.
Amaechi arrived the Senate in company of the presidential senior assistant on National Assembly matters, Senator Ita Enang, the Rivers state All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate in the last election Dakuku Peterside among others.
Amaechi dazzled the Senate and even disarmed the Senators with answers to the questions he asked, evoking laughter throughout. He was not combative, neither were the lawmakers.
Senate Minority Leader, Senator Godswill Akpabio from Akwa Ibom had earlier said the PDP caucus in the Senate did not have any questions for Amaechi.
Only APC Senators asked Amaechi questions bordering on various national issues and he answered all in a convivial atmosphere.
Amaechi’s name had been dropped from the screening list of ministerial nominees by senate three times in the past two weeks over a petition against him for alleged corruption.
Senator Heineken Lopkobiri from Bayelsa State was the next to screened and he answered only a few questions before he was asked to take a bow.
At press time Adewale Folorunsho, Baba Shehuri Mustapha, Ocholi James and Claudius Daramola were yet to be screened.