Nigeria MP dies during graft row

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Nigeria MP dies during graft row
BBC News Online

There have been chaotic scenes at the House of Representatives
A Nigerian MP collapsed and then died during a rowdy confrontation in parliament over a high profile corruption scandal.
It is believed Aminu Safana suffered a heart attack as members shouted, scuffled and exchanged punches.

The House of Representatives had been due to consider the findings of an inquiry into the conduct of the speaker, Patricia Etteh.

She was found guilty of breaking house rules in the awarding of contracts.

Rowdy

The BBC's Alex Last in Lagos says the case of Mrs Etteh of the governing party has gripped the nation at a time when the government has pledged zero tolerance for corruption.

He said chaos erupted in the House of Representatives over the conduct of the embattled speaker.

Hundreds of MPs for and against the speaker were out of their seats and shouting.

Some scuffled and swapped punches, while others waved white handkerchiefs or miniature Nigerian flags at each other.

It was during this confrontation that Mr Safana, after shouting in defence of Mrs Etteh, quietly sat down, collapsed.

The House of Representatives was meant to debate a report by an investigative panel into the conduct of Mrs Etteh.

The panel had found her guilty of breaking house rules when she awarded contracts worth $5m to refurbish her house, that of her deputy and to buy 10 new cars.

The opponents of Mrs Etteh say she must stand down.

Her supporters say she is the victim of a political vendetta and she should stay.
 

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