Thursday, August 6, 2015

As Cost Of Buhari’s US Trip

Says Cost Hugely Over Exaggerated
By Niyi Adeyi – The Presidency has refuted the
media reports claiming an estimated N2.2 Billion
as the total cost of President Muhammadu
Buhari’s recent trip to United States (US).
The rebuttal which was contained in a release
issued Wednesday by Buhari’s Senior Assistant
on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, the
Presidency held that it was very sad that, in this
age of free-flowing information and era of
change, a media organization would constitute
itself as a vehicle to peddle a lie of such “low
and ignominious quality”.
“Contrary to the newspaper’s assertions, the
total cost of the trip to the Nigerian taxpayer
was at the most minimal, in line with the policy
of this administration to cut waste and
“In point of fact, the total amount expended on
the trip by the Office of the President amounted
to nothing near ten per cent of the speculated
figure” Garba asserted.
The statement added that owing to the free
accommodation provided by the host
government, all the personal staff who
accompanied the President on the trip received
reduced allowances, adding that President
Buhari’s son, Yusuf, received neither allowances
nor estacode, while the “five Governors on the
trip each paid his own way.”
“Permanent Secretaries who traveled on the
delegation did so in accordance with extant rules
and none of them exceeded their estacode
“Apart from the Nigerian Pilot’s mischievous
mathematics, it is shortsighted and misleading
of the newspaper to have claimed that President
Buhari’s trip to the U.S. achieved nothing.
“Nigerian-US relations had suffered severely
over the past few years. That relationship has
now been reset. The benefits of this symbiotic
relationship will become more and more evident
as the Buhari administration continues to tackle
the challenges of corruption, security and the
“Some of the more immediate benefits of the
President’s trip to the U.S include: the proposed
$2.1 billion fund from the World Bank for the re-
development of the northeast battered by Boko
Haram; $5 billion from US investors in Nigeria’s
agriculture sector; $1.5 billion investment in the
Nigerian health sector and another $5 billion
investment from the US in our country’s power
sector” the Presidency contended.
Still on benefits of the trip, the release said the
embargo on the sales of weapons to Nigeria
was in the process of being removed, hitting
“Only those rabidly determined to find faults
unnecessarily will cook up falsehood in a futile
effort to rake up murk where none exists”.

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