Saraki has said ex-President Goodluck Jonathan was never desperate for power and this was evident in his experience with him.
Saraki said this in Abuja on Thursday, November 30, 2017 at the unveiling of Mallam Bolaji Abudullahi's new book, “On a Platter of Gold: How Jonathan won and lost Nigeria.“
“I think it is us Nigerians, that produce the kind of leaders we get; no matter what you say about Jonathan, I don’t think he was someone who was desperate for power,“ Saraki said.
Continuing, Saraki said: “The second encounter I will recollect was the day I decided I am going to contest to be President. I felt that I didn’t want Jonathan to hear it as news.
“I booked an appointment to see him. I went to the Villa and he said ‘come in, come in. how can I help you? I looked at the President of a third world country and said Mr. President I came to tell you that I am going to be contesting for your seat.
“Jonathan looked at me and said ‘oh, okay, good luck, good luck.’ If it were any other person may be I would not have left the Villa but that again sums up Goodluck Jonathan.”
The Senate President also revealed how the ex-President had discarded off the oil subsidy reports with a wave of hand when he approached him with documents on the need to checkmate the scam.
“I like to share one or two things that will probably summarise the former President Jonathan. I remember when I was then a PDP senator and I came across this issue of fuel subsidy and the way the country was losing close to about N1.3tn.
“In the history of this country, I don’t think of any singular kind of level of corruption as huge as that. I had a motion already that I wanted to present on the floor of the Senate. But I felt as a member of the ruling party at that time, it was only proper I discussed it with the President (first) maybe some action can be taken so that I can step down the motion.
“I booked an appointment to see Mr. President and I went with my paper.
“I started with the background of how people brought in petroleum products. I said Mr. President, in the past, people use to get award letters from the NNPC to bring in PMS, DPK, and make 10, 20 per cent profit. I said sir, they’ve taken it to another level, now, and they get an order to bring in products and they don’t want to make 10 or 20 per cent any more.
“They will get an offer to bring in a cargo of 20,000 litres they will bring in 5,000 litres but stamped it for 20,000 litres and instead of making 10 per cent; they make ten times the amount. I was telling the President thinking the President will get very agitated, but he only said, ‘Senator Saraki, you know this oil business is very oily,”’ he revealed.
Ex-president, Goodluck Jonathan, has said that though his administration failed to plug all the loopholes in battling corruption, he did well as a president.
The oil sector was mostly hit by the humongous corruption under the Jonathan led administration with ex- Petroleum minister, Diezani Alison Madueke in the centre of the allegations.
Also notable in the alleged corrupt practices under Jonathan's administration is the arms fraud deal with ex-NSA Dasuki in the middle.