Weekly Trust - - Front Page - Is­mail Mu­dashir

Se­nate Pres­i­dent, Bukola Saraki, has de­nied shar­ing N10­bil­lion re­moved from the Fed­er­a­tion Ac­count il­le­gally with the Speaker of the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives, Yakubu Dog­ara. An on­line news­pa­per had re­ported that the duo “have just il­le­gally re­ceived and shared N10­bil­lion from the na­tional trea­sury.”

It fur­ther al­leged that the money was “ar­bi­trar­ily and il­le­gally ap­proved for the law­mak­ers by the Min­is­ter of Fi­nance, Kemi Adeo­sun, in collusion with the Ac­coun­tant Gen­eral of the Fed­er­a­tion, Ahmed Idris.”

But Saraki in a state­ment by his me­dia aide, Yusuph Olaniy­onu de­scribed the re­port en­ti­tled ‘Min­is­ter Adeo­sun, Saraki, Dog­ara, Ac­coun­tant Gen­eral in N10 bil­lion fraud scan­dal’ as fake news. He said in the ab­sence of any doubt, Saraki has noth­ing to do with any pay­ment, re­ceipt or dis­burse­ment of any ex­tra-bud­getary funds.

“It is also im­por­tant to state for the record that the Premium Times ar­ti­cle in ques­tion is pure and un­mit­i­gated false news. A sim­ple check would have re­vealed that all funds in the Na­tional As­sem­bly are in the cus­tody of the Na­tional As­sem­bly Man­age­ment, which is headed by the Clerk, and not its Pre­sid­ing Of­fi­cers.

“Ad­di­tion­ally, all con­tract awards are equally over­seen by the Na­tional As­sem­bly man­age­ment, not the Pre­sid­ing Of­fi­cers,” the state­ment added.

Olaniy­onu also added:”We are aware that for some weeks now, Premium Times has had this story. How­ever, they only con­tacted us on Wed­nes­day, and the Clerk of the Na­tional As­sem­bly, after a phone call from the Spe­cial Ad­viser on Me­dia & Pub­lic­ity to the Pres­i­dent of the Se­nate, promised to give them all nec­es­sary ex­pla­na­tion and doc­u­ments on this is­sue.”

The me­dia aide said: “It is ob­vi­ous that in the bid to rope in Se­na­tor Saraki, the re­porters of Premium Times could not wait to see the Clerk and rushed to pub­lish the story with out­right false­hood. It is ex­pected, that the Edi­tors of Premium Times will not be ig­no­rant of the in­ter­nal pro­cure­ment and pay­ment process in an or­ga­ni­za­tion like the Na­tional As­sem­bly that they have cov­ered and “in­ves­ti­gated” for as long as they have been in ex­is­tence,” he said.

He said they con­sider the re­port as part of the or­ches­trated cam­paign of calumny be­ing waged against Dr Saraki by some po­lit­i­cal el­e­ments us­ing me­dia plat­forms in which they have in­ter­ests.

“In this re­gard, for this care­less and un­war­ranted as­sault on the per­son of the Pres­i­dent of the Se­nate, after sev­eral pre­vi­ous warn­ings, the lawyers of the Pres­i­dent of the Se­nate, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, will be ini­ti­at­ing le­gal ac­tion on this par­tic­u­lar mat­ter,” the state­ment said.

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