Budget controversy: Buhari, Dogara meet

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Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara on Tuesday met with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Aso Rock Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Though the meeting was held behind closed doors, it was believed to be in respect of the 2016 budget, which has been mired in controversy.

The two arms of the National Assembly have passed the budget weeks back by Buhari is still withholding his assent on account of some observed grey areas that need to be sorted out.

Former President of the Senate, Ken Nnamani and

a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Masari had on Monday met with Buhari over the same budget issue.

Nnamani told State House correspondents that the budget matter should be co-managed by both the executive and the legislature, but Masari said Buhari was right to have declined assent to the budget passed and submitted to him.

Speaker Dogara, whose visit to the villa along other members of the National Assembly leadership had been speculated since last weekend, drove into the Presidential Villa at about 2.30 pm and walked straight into the president’s office.

He came out about 30 minutes later, walked straight to his car and drove off.

Anxious newsmen who were eager to take the House of Representatives Speaker up on what is being done about the budget by the house, in view of the President’s tough stance were prevented access as the only gate leading to the fore court where the Speaker will emerge from, was locked against them.

The security men manning the gate said they were acting on instructions.

A couple of minutes after Dogara’s departure, two Presidential aides, Ita Enang and Abike Dabiri emerged from the office of the president and were followed closely by the Chief of Staff to the President, Alhaji Abba Kyari.

Kyari, however, stopped to ask what was amiss as newsmen were complaining aloud about their mistreatment.

He told the angry newsmen that the meeting of the National Assembly leadership that they were waiting to cover was not what took place.

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