OrderPaperToday – President Muhammadu Buhari has criticised the National Assembly for including a proposal of N4.5 billion to buy cars for lawmakers in the 2016 budget and the refusal of the law-making institution to comply with the Treasury Single Account (TSA).

The president said there is no way he would approve such amount of money for vehicles purchase for the lawmakers when he had turned down a bill of N400 million to buy new cars for the use of the presidency.

The President who spoke Wednesday evening at the maiden edition of his presidential media chat said members of the federal legislature cannot seek to spend such amount of money in buying cars when they already collect Transport Allowances as part of their remunerations.

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“I hope they have not already bought those cars because I will have to have a meeting with them to revisit it,” he said, adding that he may have to explore the possibility of using executive powers to deny the lawmakers their wish to buy the cars.

While admitting that though the vehicles purchase proposal passed through his table before finally making its way into the 2016 budget, he insisted that he would revisit the issue because “there is no way I would approve that when I can deny buying new cars for the presidency. I told them in the presidency that the cars I met on ground can serve for another ten years.”

The President said the budget proposal for the national assembly was prepared in line with the requirement of separation of powers in the constitution but that the judiciary may have to be called in to adjudicate on the matter if it was eventually taken to court.

He also expressed reservations with the non-compliance of the National Assembly with the TSA policy of his administration, saying the lawmakers want to operate at variance with the commitment of his government to streamline revenue and cut wastages in public expenditure.

He advised the law-making institution to live within its means in line with the dwindling revenue profile of the country, stating that the TSA is a major flank of the Change agenda of his administration.

The President who spoke on sundry other issues during the chat admitted that his government was yet to get any credible and cogent intelligence on the whereabouts and safety of the Chibok girls.

He also gave hint that the government may have to ban the use of hijab by Moslem women if the spate of female suicide bombers continues unabated.



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