Former President Olusegun Obasanjo yesterday spoke on the budget padding crisis rocking the House of Representatives, saying the accusations vindicated his position on the lawmakers’ conduct ( As Corrupt). He advised President Muhammadu Buhari to be vigilant.
The former President spoke to reporters at the Presidential Villa in Abuja during a visit to President Buhari.
He said: “Well, if you said that I have said it in the past and if there are people who didn’t believe what I said in the past then, you can now see that what has come out confirms what I said in the past. Then what I said in the past is what I will say now.”
On whether he would back an investigation into the allegations, Obasanjo said: “It is not a question of investigation; we should get men and women of integrity in the place (National Assembly) and the President should be very vigilant. Whatever should not pass should not pass.”
Obasanjo once claimed that the National Assembly and State Houses of Assembly were filled with rogues. He was lashed for using a foul language and also encouraging corruption.
In January, he challenged Senate President Bukola Saraki and House of Representatives Speaker Yakubu Dogara to open the financial records of the National Assembly for public scrutiny.
As President, he also asked the lawmakers to tell Nigerians what they were earning.
Since his sack last week as Chairman of the Appropriation Committee of the House of Representatives for allegedly being implicated in budget padding, Hon. Abdumimin Jibrin has been hurling big allegations at the leadership of the House, claiming that Speaker Yakubu Dogara, Deputy Speaker Yusuff Lasun, Whip Ado Doguwa and House Minority Leader Leo Ogor supervised the insertion of N40billion into the budget at a secret location.
On his mission at the Villa, Obasanjo said: “Not too long ago, I was in Liberia and Gambia and I have messages these two countries will want me to deliver to the President.
“Also, only yesterday (Sunday) I came back from Seychelles Island where I attended this year’s Annual General meeting of Africa Export Development Bank. And there are aspects of the proceedings that I think I should update the President.”
On whether he enjoys travelling, Obasanjo said: “Travelling is a good education, what you will learn about a country by visiting that country for two or three days you won’t learn by reading through books.”
Asked further if he was considering slowing down, Obasanjo said: “May God never let you slow down.”