Saraki Avoids Buhari’s Closed-door Meeting Over 2016 Budget


BEVERLY HILLS, April 26, (THEWILL) – Senate President Bukola Saraki did not to participate at a closed-door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the presidential villa on Tuesday over the 2016 budget.

Saraki was tipped to lead other Senators and a strong delegation from the National Assembly to a crucial closed-door meeting with Buhari at the Aso Rock villa to find a lasting solution to the 2016 National Budget (Appropriation Bill).

The meeting became imperative as it would be an avenue to bring up grey areas identified in the budget and harmonize them in the overall interest of Nigerians for quick passage of the budget.

However, Saraki did not attend or participate at the closed-door meeting and it was not clear if he sent a representative or had excused himself before the meeting.

The meeting lasted for 30 minutes, with Abba Kyari, Chief of Staff to the President, and Ita Enang, Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters in attendance.

At the end of the meeting, no government official was willing to comment on the development including Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, who was spotted at the meeting.

Security operatives barred correspondents from getting access to Dogara after the meeting as the security gate erected at the front of the council chambers was locked.

Dogara left the meeting and made his way to his vehicle without talking to the media, while Enang declined comment on the meeting.

There are speculations that Saraki’s absence from the meeting might be due to disappointment with the Executive over his ongoing trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT).

Story by David Oputah