The Chief of Staff to the President, Rt. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila has reacted to the viral misrepresentation of a budget line item in the 2024 Appropriation bill under the Office of the Chief of Staff to the President incorrectly indicating that the sum of N20.5 Billion was earmarked for the renovation of the residence of the Chief of Staff.
According to a post made by Gbajabiamila in his official X and Facebook handles, the said N20.5 Billion was clearly budgeted for renovation of Presidential Quarters in Dodan Barracks and the Vice President’s Lodge in Lagos, overhaul of the information management and communications facilities in the Presidency to meet modern standards and provision of vehicles for the staff of the Presidency.
The post by the Chief of Staff to the President read as follows:
“I have seen social media commentary regarding the 2024 Appropriation Bill, particularly the provisions under the Office of the Chief of Staff to the President. Owing to the erroneous nature of these reports, it has become necessary to clarify that there is no provision in the 2024 Appropriation Bill for the renovation of any residence for the Chief of Staff to the President. I live in my private residence.”
“The sums mischievously quoted by online bloggers and fake news merchants are for renovating the Presidential Quarters in Dodan Barracks and the Vice President’s Lodge in Lagos, to overhaul the information management and communications facilities in the Presidency to meet modern standards and to provide vehicles for the staff of the Presidency. The sums proposed for these projects are clearly stated in the budget proposal and bear no resemblance to the deceptive online commentary.
“This administration welcomes and encourages scrutiny of government expenditure; this is why the Budget proposal is publicly available. However, healthy public debate about government actions requires us to be responsible with our utterances and engage based on facts rather than insinuations and falsehoods.”
Since the budget office of the federation published the details of the 2024 Appropriation Bill on its website, many Nigerians have been scouring through the bill to analyse the provisions of the budget.