Controversy over the 2016 budget is far from over, as Senate President Bukola Saraki has moved against attempt by President Muhammadu Buhari to doctor the 2016 budget.
The Senate president has therefore insisted on overriding the president’s veto at the expiration of 30 days according to the constitution.
According to a source, Saraki has initially refused to attend a meeting with the vice president, Yemi Osinbajo, and the speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, to solicit the assistance of the leaders of the National Assembly to include fresh details omitted by the presidency in the 2016 Appropriation Bill.
But after pleading from chief of staff to President Buhari, Abba Kyari, to Saraki, he later attended the meeting where he reportedly told the vice president that, “You can’t strip us naked in public and then dress us in white robes behind closed doors.
“Sorry Mr. Vice President, we cannot help you; let us continue to follow the law and abide with our constitutional duties in the interest of Nigeria,” Saraki reportedly told Osinbajo in refusal to manipulate the contents of the 2016 budget through the backdoor.
Speaker Yakubu Dogara was also said to have re-echoed what Saraki said, noting clearly that the president and his top officials had repeatedly abused the fundamentals for any cordial relationship.
Saraki is facing trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal, CCT, for discrepancies observed in his asset declaration while he served as a two-term governor of Kwara State.
The trial is believed to be a political witch-hunt masterminded by the presidency and some elements within the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, who were unhappy with Saraki’s emergence as Senate president.
President Buhari, a retired military general himself, was said to have described Saraki’s emergence as a “coup.”
Culled from Nigerian Pilot