No request for presidential jet before us – Senate

The Senate, on Thursday, said there was no request from the Presidency to approve the purchase of a Presidential aircraft.

Senate Leader, Opeyemi Bamidele, during plenary, dismissed speculations that the Upper Chamber was debating approval of a Presidential aircraft in the 2024 supplementary budget.

Opeyemi said: “Senate is aware of insinuations that the its President, Godswill Akpabio ,either had at one time, indicated that we had a request for purchase of a new plane to be approved for President Tinubu.

“And that President of the Senate had indicated that regardless of what Nigerians were going through, that it will be approved.

“As we sit here, a section of the social media had also been circulating that we had gone into an executive session to discuss about the presidential request for a new plane and how we are going to approve it.

“Let me alert Nigerians that there is the presence of a fifth columnist and some other propagandists who are doing everything possible to destabilise this country and also destabilise the parliament.

“I say for the record, as the Leader of this Senate, that there is no request before this us as of yet.”

The Senate Leader added that there had not been a basis for the Red Chamber to debate whether to approve a Presidential aircraft or not.

“It has never been discussed either on the floor of this Senate or among individual senators or at the executive session.

“There is no such request. If the request comes, it is not about the President of the Senate alone.

“It is for 469 elected representatives of the Nigerian people to discuss and take a position. 360 in the House of Representatives, 109 in the senate.”he said.

Reacting, Akpabiosaid: “When you hear stories such as the death of the Vice President of Malawi as a result of a defective plane and then you hear stories such as the death of the President of Iran, as a result of defective helicopter, we should never dream and allow such to be our portion, it will not be.

“The Senate is responsible, the National Assembly is very responsible. We will look into issues that will benefit the governance of the country.

“Those speculating know very well that something like that may come in future, and if it is a necessity, the Senate will look into it. But ,there is nothing like that before us now,” Akpabio said

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