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Bukola Saraki

Saraki says $29.9bn loan, not discussed at meeting with Buhari

The President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki, has advised politicians and the media to stop peddling speculations about his recent visits to the Presidency.

A statement by his Special Adviser, Media and Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, in Abuja on Thursday, said that politicians were linking the visits to President Muhammadu Buhari’s yet-to-be-approved 29.9 billion dollars foreign loan request.

“In all his recent meetings with President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, the issue of the proposed loan never came up for discussion,” the statement said.

It, therefore, said that the comments by some politicians on the loan issue, without any factual basis, were “unfortunate.”

“Like I once told the media, these politically-motivated commentaries are trivialising a serious national issue.

“They are presenting it as if it is a personal matter that can be decided at meetings between Saraki and Buhari.

“The National Assembly which I head as Senate President has taken a position on the issue as required of it by the laws of the land and legislative conventions,’’ the statement quoted Saraki as saying.

It said that Saraki also stated that “the present National Assembly will make decisions based on national interest and will always act in the interest the people.

“That is why in spite of the fact that members belong to different parties, when national issues come to the floor, we forget about party affiliations and act as Nigerians elected to protect the interest of Nigeria.

“A visit to the Presidency by the Senate President is a normal thing because we need to consult, discuss, exchange ideas and make suggestions to each other from time to time.

“More importantly, at this time, when the nation is facing economic crisis, there is need for frequent engagements by the Presidency and the National Assembly.’’

The statement added that “Saraki, nonetheless, urged politicians to stop playing to the gallery or drawing political capital from all issues.

“Similarly, the media should exercise restraint in their reportage and commentaries in order to properly serve our people.”

About Charles Igbinidu

Charles Igbinidu is a Public Relations practitioner in Lagos, Nigeria

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