Senate President Bukola Saraki has said that President Muhammadu Buhari was misinformed by his aides and advisers on the debt figures payable by the national assembly to Delta and Taraba States.
Saraki was reacting to a statement attributed to Buhari that the national assembly increased the debts meant to be paid the states.
Buhari had said that that the total amount approved by the national assembly to Delta and Taraba states was higher than the amount approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC).
Speaking however in a statement issued by Yusuph Olaniyan, media aide to Saraki on Wednesday, Saraki said that, “the Senate has noted that the letter by President Muhammadu Buhari to the Senate in which he claimed that National Assembly approval for refunds to Delta and Taraba State Governments through the issuance of Promissory Notes, for projects executed on behalf of the Federal Government was different from what the Federal Executive Council approved and the reports in the media over the issue were wrong and must have resulted from misinformation to the President by his aides”.
The statement added further that, “the president had claimed in his letter to the National Assembly dated March 5, 2019 that ‘While the Federal Executive Council approved a total sum of N78, 601, 631, 430.16 as reimbursement to Delta and Taraba State Governments, the National Assembly approved N90, 236,461, 031.36, which is higher than the amount approved by the Federal Executive Council’.
“The Senate would like to clarify that the breakdown 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, 398, 701. 28 while the total for the two states is N90, 236, 461, 031. 36.
“Therefore, the National Assembly approved the figures submitted to it by the Ministry of Finance as approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) for projects executed on behalf of the Federal Government. At no time did the executive forwarded the figure of N78, 601, 631, 430, 16 to us and we do not know where the President got that figure from.
“We believe the President must have been misinformed and misadvised by his aides while writing the letter he sent on this issue to the National Assembly.”