Presidency spent N2bn not 6bn on maintenance of private jets – Garba Shehu

This clarification was made by the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu following reports that the whopping sum had been spent on the jets in the last six months.

President Muhammadu Buhari

The Presidency has denied spending N6 billion on the maintenance of Nigeria’s presidential fleet.

This clarification was made by the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu following reports that the whopping sum had been spent on the jets in the last six months.

Shehu said further, in a statement released in response, that only N2.3 billion had been spent on maintaining the aircraft.

The statement, according to Vanguard, reads:

“The government is focused on solving the many major issues our country faces in the areas of the economy, corruption and security. Yet almost every week, the Presidency has to also deal with the distractions which do nothing but distract from the task of government.”

“Referring to documents he had requested from the Operational Office of the Presidential Fleet after his attention was drawn to the speculative report, Malam Shehu pointed out that the sum of N2.3 billion was released to the Presidential Air Fleet (PAF) by the office of the Accountant General of the Federation between May and November 2015.”

“This includes releases for personnel cost, overhead and capital expenditure out of the sum of N5,190,381,386.00 appropriated for PAF on the 2015 budget. The documents also showed that the sum of N2,127,103,086.66 had so far been expended, leaving a balance of N172,568,912.34 from the amount released.”

“Thus, the Fleet expended the sum of N449,081,037.25 within the last months comprising N98,500,218.00 for operations, N165,373,176.91 on training and N85,500,116.75 on personnel medicals and overhead. Additionally, the sum of N99,715,493.51 was expended on aircraft maintenance, spares, and subscription services required for operations.”

“Any of these documents could have been made available had the newspaper reached out to me or to any one of my colleagues. The damage to the image of government and the good management of the Presidential Air Fleet could have been avoided”.

Shehu also said that Nigeria had only 10 aircraft in its presidential fleet and not 14 as widely reported.

Earlier rumours had it that Buhari was planning to selloff some of the jets to save cost but the Presidency denied the claims.

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