Bullet-proof tyres for Buhari, others to gulp N94.5m
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Bullet-proof tyres for Buhari, others to gulp N94.5m

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Buhari, others’ bullet-proof tyres to gulp N94.5m

The State House Permanent secretary, Jalal A. Arabi, on Thursday explained why bullet-proof tyres for President Muhammadu Buhari and other government officials will swallow at least N94.5 million from the 2017 budget.

Speaking before the Senate Committee on Federal Character and Inter-Governmental Affairs, he also explained that canteen and kitchen equipment will consume a whooping N100.8 million.

Though Arabi failed to disclose the exact number of tyres the money was meant for, he however told the committee that most of tyres are treated, “hence exorbitant and constitute the bulk of the purchase cost.”

Explaining the N100.8 million for canteen and kitchen, Arabi explained that the “amount is principally the unreleased appropriation for 2016, which was the unpaid balance in 2015 for contracts awarded and executed. The sum of N80.2 million appropriated in 2016 has up to this moment not been released hence its rollover and inclusion in 2017.”

He further said, “It is important to mention that the proposal covered kitchen equipment in the main residence, VP’s residence, banquet hall, State House medical centre, State House auditorium and 22 guest houses.”

Speaking on electricity charges, he told the committee that N45.3 million was approved in the last year’s budget.

Read also: Ozekhome goes to court against EFCC over N75m Fayose paid him

Explaining further, he said that the State House’s electricity bill for 2016, according to Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC), was N252 million and another outstanding liability of over N300 million for State House, Lagos facilities.

According to him, the provision in the 2016 budget could not accommodate the outstanding liability.

Based on this, he said that the management of the State House was forced to install meters in 2016 to ensure proper billing “and that was what reduced the bill to a reasonable figure”.

He added, “Since the bills were subject to reconciliation, we have made a modest provision of the sum of N319.6 million for 2017 to settle current and part of outstanding bills as noted above”.

Senator Tijjani Kaura, the committee chairman, reacting said that the State House Medical Centre actually requires adequate funding since it does not serve only the Presidential Villa but also, provides services for outsiders.

 

 

 

 

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