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You’ve Been Misinformed About Debts Payable To States - Saraki To Buhari

Saraki has expressly stated that Buhari made a wrong accusation of debt inflation against the National Assembly. 

Funsho Akinwale

The Senate President, Olubukola Saraki, has responded to President Muhammadu Buhari’s accusation against the National Assembly of inflating debts to be paid by the federal government to some deserving states.

The president, through one of his aides, tackled the senate president for paying a higher amount than what was approved by the president to Taraba and Delta States.

According to him, the Federal Executive Council had approved a total sum of 78 billion naira as reimbursement to the two states, but the lawmakers, led by Saraki, approved 90 billion naira, which is higher than what the federal government earmarked for the states.

The federal government, while reacting to the misconduct of the legislature, told the national assembly to send details relating to the amount approved by the lawmakers to the states.

The debt repayment is for project executed by the two states on behalf of the federal government.

Meanwhile, in a statement released on Wednesday, to the media by the Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the Senate President, Yusuph Olaniyonu said the accusation and media reports were wrong, adding that the president must have been misinformed by his aides.

Commenting further on the issue, Olaniyonu said that the senate only approved the exact figures for Taraba and Delta States that were submitted by the executive through the Ministry of Finance as stated on Page 402 of a document titled, “Federal Ministry of Finance Submission of Federal Government of Nigeria Outstanding Liabilities to National Assembly May, 2018.

“The senate would like to clarify that the break down which the executive through the Ministry of Finance submitted to the national assembly showed that the outstanding liability due to Taraba State is N22,254,062,330,08 while that of Delta is N67,982,398701.28, while the total for the two states is N90,236,461,031.36,” Olaniyonu stated.

The Senate President’s spokesman, however, added that the clarification became imperative to set the record straight and change the perception of the general public about the issue.