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The Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Babajide Omoworare has said, President Muhammadu Buhari did not relegate the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo by traveling without transmitting a letter to the National Assembly to empower the VP to act on his behalf.
Omoworare said this in Abuja while addressing senate correspondents on wednesday.
Omoworare who was accompanied with his counterpart in the House of Representatives, Umar El-Yakub, also said that contrary to agitations by some individuals and groups, that the President has not in any way undermined or relegated the office of the Vice President.
The Presidential aide insisted that the only case where people could raise issues is when a President is ill and is unable to transmit his absence to the National Assembly.
“He has no reason to do so. I don’t think there is any way or manner that the office of the Vice President has been relegated.
“The President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria can work from anywhere he is in the world.”
“The only celebrated case was that of the late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, who was ill and could not transmit any letter to the National Assembly.
“The National Assembly had to work round the situation by ensuring that executive powers go to the Vice President,” Omoworare said.
He insisted that the present circumstances is different from the Yar’Adua era and that Buhari did not breach any law by not transmitting a letter to the National Assembly to enable the VP exercise executive powers during his present private trip to London.
He said that the Presidency will continue to work in partnership with the National Assembly while equally respecting its independence.
On his part, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (House of Representatives), Mr. Umar El-Yakub, noted that Buhari is committed to transparency, accountability and preventing revenue leakages in government.
On whether a reversion to the January December Budget cycle alone can bring the much desired development of the country, Yakub said: “I like to agree with you that it is not the cycle that will make the budget work.
“But obviously it is ensuring that there is timely releases and timely execution of projects which a January December budget cycle provides.
“I have also mentioned the fact that part of the revenue that was drawn that goes into this budget and the finance has captured some of the revenues that we expect.
“I like to differ with you on the fact that capital budget are being released. Mr President gave directive that N600billion be released so as to make the 40 per cent implementation of the capital budget.
“The minister of Finance has disbursed this money and he is disbursing this money. The budget will work because it affords us proper planning.
“I am sure you know that infrastructure projects have suffered before because of the fact that budgets are signed towards the middle of the year and it is raining season and therefore they can’t even access the funds because the work cannot be done on major roads, bridges and even power projects,” he said.