BEVERLY HILLS, October 19, (THEWILL) – Governors of the 36 states under the umbrella of the Nigeria Governors Forum, NGF, have debunked reports in the media that President Muhammadu Buhari tonguelashed them during their visit to him on Tuesday, showing his displeasure over some states’ inability to pay salaries.
THEWILL recalls that the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, had in a statement issued after the Meeting, said his principal asked the governors how they could sleep soundly when workers had not been paid.
Buhari was said to have used the meeting he had with the governors before travelling to Turkey, to express concern over the growing complaints and agitations by workers in states over unpaid salaries and allowances, despite previous interventions by the federal government.
“How can anyone go to bed and sleep soundly when workers have not been paid their salaries for months?
“I actually wonder how the workers feed their families, pay their rents and even pay school fees for their children,” the President was quoted as saying.
But addressing State House correspondents at the end of the NGF meeting in Abuja, Chairman of the Forum, Governor Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara State, denied such comments as coming from Buhari.
While stating that the meeting with the President was “fruitful”, he disclosed that Buhari accepted all their requests but only asked them to represent their case on his return from Istanbul, Turkey where he has gone to participate in the 9th Summit of the Developing 8, D-8, on Friday, October 20.
Yari said the President had told them that since he was not the technical person, he would need the input of both the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, who is the Chairman of the National Economic Council as well as the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, before he would act on their requests.
His words, “We briefed the members about our meeting with Mr President yesterday (Tuesday), which I’m surprised some of you turned it upside down.
“You got the full briefing from me and then some of your people went and said they got from another source. I don’t know which source said the president is not happy with the governors. It is very unfortunate.
“We had a very fruitful meeting with Mr President and Mr President accepted all our requests.
“The only thing Mr President said was that he, not being a technical person, we should wait for the minister of finance to return, and the chairman of the economic council to be around so that they can give him update and support on what he is going to say to us.
“So, he said we should reschedule this meeting. I think this is what I told the press yesterday but I wonder how they turned it around.
“Please, we have to be serious with our job. We are working for Nigeria; we are working for our country, working for our people so we shouldn’t misinform the public and should be guided with the things discussed.”