EXCLUSIVE: Despite cash crunch, Nigerian Senate illegally buying N4.7billion exotic cars for Saraki, other senators

Senate chamber
Senate chamber

The Nigerian Senate is currently on the verge of illegally buying various brands of exotic vehicles for use by its President, Bukola Saraki, and the 108 other senators, PREMIUM TIMES can authoritatively report today.

The cars will cost taxpayers an estimated N4.7billion that could be spent on vaccinating newborns and save them from dying or on providing electricity for remote communities so kids stop doing school assignments using paraffin lamps.

The upper legislative chamber is buying the vehicles at a time millions of Nigerians are facing severe economic hardship, including nonpayment of salaries.

The procurement is also happening at a time millions of Nigerians are enduring long and humiliating fuel queues across the country because the federal government is too broke to pay importers of petrol several billions in subsidy claims.

Already, the management of the National Assembly has invited bids from contractors interested in supplying the vehicles.

In an advertisement published in some newspapers, including Blueprint of November 20, 2015, the authorities asked the companies to tender for “Lot 1S, Supply of Utility Vehicles”.

The advert, in what appears a deliberate ploy to conceal details, failed to indicate the number, type and specification of vehicles being bought.

However, PREMIUM TIMES has now obtained detailed copies of tender documents being discreetly issued to prospective contractors.

In one of the documents, the Senate indicated it was buying 120 units of Toyota Land Cruiser, 2016 model.

Other details of the vehicles included that they must be “American Brand, V8, VXR, 5.7, Auto Engine WITH INTELLIGENCE”.

The senators also want the vehicles to come with integrated navigator cruise control, QI-Compatible wireless charging and Kinetic dynamic suspension system, as well as being “full option”.

On November 21, the Senate also put up another advert it labelled “addendum”.

The latest advert under Lot 2S, which was couched to look like an oversight in the first advert, was for the purchase of vehicles for the use of the senate president’s convoy.

Under Lot 2S and based on the tender document, which we have also obtained, the national assembly is seeking to purchase a 2016 model Mercedes Benz S550 for Mr. Saraki.

Other vehicles being procured for Mr. Saraki include four 2016 Toyota Prado jeeps, four 2016 Toyota Hilux SS (Auto) as well as a 2016 model Toyota Hiace Bus.

The spokesperson for the Senate, Aliyu Sabi, could not be reached Saturday to comment on these new procurement as his telephone was switched off the several times our reporter called.

The Director of Information of the National Assembly, Ishaku Dibal, declined to comment on the matter. He said he was driving and couldn’t comment after our reporter put his question to him.

Subsequent calls to his telephone failed to connect.

PREMIUM TIMES carried out a market survey on all the vehicles being bought by the senate and we can confirm that the upper chamber would spend over four billion naira of taxpayers money to enhance their taste for luxury.

Specifically, give or take, vehicles are valued at N4.739,515,625.

Although there are 109 senators, the lawmakers are buying 120 Toyota Land-cruisers. It is not clear where the balance of 11 vehicles would go.

We arrived at our figure of N4.7 billion after computing the cost of the vehicles, 35 per cent duties to be paid, and another 35 per cent levy.

There is also the expected 35 per cent profit margin to be made by each supplier based on the requirements of Nigeria’s procurement act.

Our checks revealed that a Toyota Land Cruiser, 2016 model, goes for $84,000, and at the current exchange rate of N250 to the dollar, it amounts to N21,000,000.

If 75 per cent of cost is added, being duty, levy and profit margin (translating to N15, 750,000) each vehicle would cost Nigerian tax payers N36,750,000.

Given that the senators propose to buy 120 units of the vehicles, the total figure is expected to be N4.41billion.

As for the convoy of the Senate president, we found that Mercedes Benz S550 2016 model goes for $95,650, which translates to N23, 912,500 and addition of 105 percent (duty, levy and profit margin) takes the total cost of the car to N49,020,625.00.

For the Toyota Prado SUVs, we were able to determine that each unit costs $73,000, which equals N18,250,000, while a 105 per cent addition of levy, duty and profit would put the cost of each at N37,412,500.

The total cost of the four (4) Prado Jeeps being acquired for Mr. Saraki is N149, 650,000.00.

Equally proposed for the Senate President’s convoy are four Toyota Hilux SS, Auto vehicles each costing $50,150.

At N250 to the dollar, each Hilux Van would cost N12,537,500 and an additional 75 percent would skyrocket the price of each unit to N25,601, 875.00.

The total figure for the four being proposed amounts to N102,407,500.00

The last vehicle under consideration is a Toyota Hiace Bus 2016 model, which by our findings, goes for $65,000 or N16,250,000 in naira value.

An addition of 105 percent, being duty, levy and profit, put the cost of the bus at N28,437,500.00

Below is the number of vehicles and estimated cost in summary.

  1. 120NOS Toyota Land Cruiser —       N4,410,000,000:00
  1. 1Nos.Mercedes Benz S550     —        N49,020,625:00
  1. 4nos. Toyota Prado                 —         N149,650,000:00
  1. 4nos Toyota Hilux SS             —          N102,407,500:00
  1. 1Nos. Toyota Hiace Bus        —          N28,437,500:00

 

Grand total:                                                     N4.739,515,625.00

A cocktail of illegalities

PREMIUM TIMES can report that the acquisition of cars for senators is a violation of the monetisation policy of the federal government.

Under the policy, no new vehicles should be purchased by any agency of government for use by officials.

Rather, public officers and political office holders are to receive 250 per cent of their annual basic salary as motor vehicle loan, which translates to N5.07 million for each senator.

Our sources at the National Assembly said the Senators got these loans before also proceeding to acquire these new Toyota Land Cruisers.

Also, the President of the Senate is said to have inherited the vehicles used by his predecessor, and Senate insiders say “he really does not need new cars as the one he uses are in top condition”.

But even if he needs new cars, the number being acquired for him is in excess of what the law provides.

According to the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission, the Senate President is entitled to a maximum of six vehicles, and not 10 as being bought for him.

He is entitled to two official cars, one pilot car, one protocol/press car, one ambulance and one security car.

Members of the two chambers of the national assembly are renown for their taste for exotic vehicles even after receiving monetary pay in lieu of official vehicles based on the provisions of the law.

The Senate had in the last legislative session bought Toyota Prado Jeeps for each Senator at the cost of over N1.3 billion, coming after both chambers had also bought Toyota Camry, for Senators and Peugeot vehicles for members of the House of Representatives.

The allegedly shady deal involved in the purchase of the Peugeot vehicles formed part of the charges against then Speaker Dimeji Bankole when he was taken to court after completing his term.

What N4.7billion can do

If deployed towards enhancing healthcare delivery, N4.7 billion can be used in building 235 primary health care centres across Nigeria (enough for at least 6 health care centres in each state) at the cost of N20 million each.

The money, N4.7 billion, can also provide over 470,000 children with insecticide-treated mosquito nets at N10,000 each, saving them from the scourge of malaria which today kills more than 300,000 Nigerian children under the age of five annually and responsible for 11 per cent of maternal mortality cases yearly, according to experts at the Malaria Action Programme for States (MAPS).

Still on healthcare, over 10 million Nigerian kids could get complete malaria treatment dosage, at N460 if the N4.7 billion was directed to this life-saving purpose.

If that money is spent on boosting yield of farm produce, the amount can cover the cost of procurement of about 626,667 bags of fertilizers for Nigerian farmers at N7,500 each.

The money –N4.7 billion – can also offset a six-month wage bill of 40,000 minimum wage workers presently owed salary payment by some state governments seeking bailout from the federal government.

In order to provide conducive learning environment in schools, 470,000 sets of school furniture, comprising table and chair at N10,000 each, can be procured at the cost of N4.7 billion. Yet kids sit on bare floors to study in many schools across the country while the parliamentarians gets N4.7 billion to buy cars.

In the housing sector, at N7million per piece, the country can provide 671 additional cheap housing for citizens; and provide 51 thousand households with potable water at N92,000 per household connection.

 Unit CostAmount from 4,700,000,000
Safety net10000470,000
Malaria Treamtent Dose460 10,217,391
Cost of complete immunization5,750817,391
Cost of 2-lane road90,000,00052
Healthcare centre20,000,000235
Low cost housing7,000,000671
Cost of Water for an Household9200051,087
Fertiliser7,500626,667
Cost of a school building20,000,000235
Minimum wage18,000 261,111
Cost of School Chairs and Table10,000470,000

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  • Ola Awosika

    If this is true, it’s a fucking disgrace.

  • Spoken word

    Bastards

  • Olusegun Dada

    This cannot be true.

  • Ashibogu

    Wahala dey oooo! No more comment. Make I go drink tea first.

  • Nwa_Africa

    That is why Buhari MUST removed corrupt Saraki from senate no matter how………………

  • Enemona

    This is one of the reasons those criminals wanted to gag online press.

  • Onike24

    What did we do to offend these people? Haba.

  • Sword of Damocles

    the reason why this article is wonderful in addition to the basic revelation, is that the article also EMPIRICALLY documents what could be procured with the same amount(4.7 Billion Naira) for the benefit of the masses. APC in the NASS is a joke that really isnt funny, they are just like their PDP predecessors in that they dont give a hoot about the Nigerian people. It is an ardous journey but we must endeavor to RECALL these betrayers. PS, what roads do they plan to drive these HIGH END vehicles on? Just like a typical elites, compulsive indulgence without planning/thinking. Let me make a prediction, and you can hold me to it: Nigeria is going NOWHERE with these lot, and you can take that to the BANK, wow!

    • NwaIgbo

      Begin a recall of all these thieves, PDP and APC, for they are not there to serve the people but to enriched themselves while the people continue to grind in poverty.

    • PolyGon2013

      As long as you have Saraki as SP, we will continue to have impunity at Senate.

      • defash1

        Remove Saraki, the Senate will still continue the flamboyant attitude without considering the country is broke. Saraki case is because some people within APC want to mess him up, if their people are there they will cover it up.

        All our politicians are corrupt but is the reflection of the society. Those guys spent money to gget there hence the reason until we change our approach it will remain the same.

  • Rommel

    Rotimi Chibuikem Amechi has said it severally that these types of behavior by politicians can never stop until Nigerians rise and begin to pelt these animals with stones,sachet water,flour,rotten tomatoes and eggs anywhere they are sighted and I agree with him,if Nigerians begin to react today,such news will disappear from Nigeria.

    • New Nigerian

      ..Saraki was pelted with stones in Ilorin, last Eid…this should continue everywhere for these shameless self-servants!

    • NwaIgbo

      That’s the only way.

  • Danladi

    Sai baba, sai saraki, sai apc, baba is working, apc is working, change has come walahi ba! CHANGE INDEED!

  • New Nigerian

    Let the people rise and shut down the senate….we can do this peacefully and subsist with only the house of reps. These parasites would not cease or desist until the host (Nigeria and Nigerians) die, it is in their very DNA to be parasitic – these bunch of plutocrats at the senate!

  • Muller Dieter

    let us wait and see if President Buhari will approved buying of billions of Naira cars when Nigerian are suffering then he will have to come out to define to us what is a change in respect to his Position as the President

    • CovertNigerian

      The N’Assembly has a degree of financial autonomy and may not require presidential approval for this purchase.

    • osric

      do they actually need to get approval from the president? that is doubtful because they an independent arm of government.

  • Tunsj

    When is this nonsense going to stop? These clowns are taking advantage of Nigerians.

  • Very Proud Oily IZON Redeemer

    The government of Nigeria is today under the rule of the Apes in APC. If Buhari does not want the Senate president to buy vehicles, all he has to do, is to call leaders of the party to discuss the matter period. Instead the buharimice are sponsoring media houses to publish childish news items against Saraki-Is the ruling party not supposed to be in charge of the affairs of the country? Rather they are attempting to destroy it—The wife of Buhari recently travelled to Geneva-Switzerland according to media reports-with over 70 women—–at the cost of billion of Naira to the tax payers—–None spoke against it——But because APC led by the Apes under Tinubu were not able to have their way in the Senate–they have to settle Premium Times to paint the Senate President who happens to be a member of the janjaweed APC party black-That was the Saraki the Fulanis ati Yorubas used to smear Jonathan-The trouble with Nigerian politics is that we refuse to talk when we are supposed to—-The PDP which is in opposition is still sleeping–they are in a trance–So cannot act like their misguided counterparts———-in APC——–Aware the money will surely come from the Awoof oil wells in the SS—So who cares!———————————-At least Buhari told us Abacha did not steal a dime from my oil revenue base—–abi? Let my people go biko

    • Buhari4Ever

      Deri Orbuka, when will you ever reason like a human being? The Ijaw people cannot move forward with subhuman s like you. Frustration will kill you soon

    • PolyGon2013

      Senate is independent of the presidency! Buhari cannot be poke nosing into everything that the senate does. It is we the citizen that will teach them sense.

  • SAM .A

    I have said it repeatedly here , we need to carry out Mental test on any body aspiring to any political office.There is something missing in the faculty of all these elected legislooters Sense of JUDGMENT. The country is broke , some governors can’t afford minimum wage of N18,000 , the price of oil /barrel is < $40. The whole country and states are in debt Yet this group elected thieves are planning to purchase luxury cars worth of 4.7 billions ,where is their sense of judgement.
    I want to move a motion here , that Legislature , Senators and House of Reps should be on PART TIME as is done in Texas in US.You ride your can , have your job , onlt go to house for few months .
    # part time Legislatures.

  • Debekeme

    They do it because some of you will soon come online fighting over APC, PDP or who is a member of a zoo or not.

    They divide us because they know we all retreat to our religion, tribalism and ethnicity at every opportunity.

    When they drive these posh cars will they open the door for you to come and enjoy with them?

    Let the supporters of Buhari, Saraki, APC and PDP start to fight the,selves while these criminals continue to steal our money.

    Mumu people always have mumu leaders who steal their money. You get the leaders you deserve!

    I met one of these so called Senators on a fight to Abuja and he was delaying the plane because he was doing ‘big man’. I told him off seriously. It was after i told him off that others on the flight joined me in telling him off. He eventually apologized and shrunk into his seat.

    When we stand up to them they lose their power. Stand up to them!

  • absam777

    The blame should start with the presidency. Why PMB is still holding on to 10 aircrafts from wasteful Jonathan era beats me. When he shows example of thrift I am sure these bastards will be more careful of their thieving as a right.

  • PolyGon2013

    They should be buying Innosson vehicles. this is our home brand.

    • Curseless

      There you go!

  • olawale

    They would all be invistigated .PMB won’t welcome corruption. sai baba

    • Very Proud Oily IZON Redeemer

      Buhari Destroyed Nigeria In 6 Months – Alhaji Balarabe Musa.

      1] $1 is equal to N261 today in Parallel Market.
      2] Nigeria dropped from No 1 Investment destination to 7th in Africa.
      3] Price of a Bag of rice jumped from N8,000 to N13,000.
      4] 1,293,000 Nigerian lost their jobs in 5 months.
      5] About N1trn paid out for Fuel subsidy and still no Fuel anywhere.
      6] N25billion a day payment for REMITA swept under the carpet.
      7] N5billion from Foreign reserved squandered.
      8] $4.3billion external loan received in few months.
      9] Billions of Naira spend on Salary bailout, yet workers and pensioners are still being owed [Used to thank those that sponsored Buhari’s campaign].
      10] Elections results now are written in Buhari’s office, those that opposes the fraud are treated as criminals. Kogi and Bayelsa can say better.
      11] Over N14billion spent in 5 months for President’s travel bills, yet not a single investor have looked at Nigerian side.
      12] Freedom of speech is now luxury as list of blogger, reporters and newspapers owners that will be jailed have been complied. Plans total and is planning to destroy the South south Geo Political zone-by sending their sons and daughteras to prison…..including Jonathan.

      It is a shame that the gains of Nigerian in 55 years is destroyed in just 6 Months. ‪#‎ChangeIndeed‬.

  • Olu from South Africa

    Vicious circle of madness. Shame!

  • Very Proud Oily IZON Redeemer

    Buhari Destroyed Nigeria In 6 Months – Alhaji Balarabe Musa.

    1] $1 is equal to N261 today in Parallel Market.
    2] Nigeria dropped from No 1 Investment destination to 7th in Africa.
    3] Price of a Bag of rice jumped from N8,000 to N13,000.
    4] 1,293,000 Nigerian lost their jobs in 5 months.
    5] About N1trn paid out for Fuel subsidy and still no Fuel anywhere.
    6] N25billion a day payment for REMITA swept under the carpet.
    7] N5billion from Foreign reserved squandered.
    8] $4.3billion external loan received in few months.
    9] Billions of Naira spend on Salary bailout, yet workers and pensioners are still being owed [Used to thank those that sponsored Buhari’s campaign].
    10] Elections results now are written in Buhari’s office, those that opposes the fraud are treated as criminals. Kogi and Bayelsa can say better.
    11] Over N14billion spent in 5 months for President’s travel bills, yet not a single investor have looked at Nigerian side.
    12] Freedom of speech is now luxury as list of blogger, reporters and newspapers owners that will be jailed have been complied.

    It is a shame that the gains of Nigerian in 55 years is destroyed in just 6 Months. ‪#‎ChangeIndeed‬.

    • Akiika

      Have you noticed that nobody took your misinformation seriously?

    • bissy

      This guy need to be section to Yaba or Aro cus his gibberish is incomprehensible

    • osric

      you are a joker. with the central bank emptied after all that looting what do you expect? Freedom of speech? well metuh, fayose and kayode are still free out there shouting their heads off and insulting PMB given the slightest opportunity. When bloggers and reporters are in jail then you talk. Do not talk about what never happened otherwise you deserved to be in jail.

  • Simeon

    As long as thugs, looters and criminals such as Saraki, Akpabio, Ekweremadu and Malaye are the flag bearers of the senate, they will continue to loot because they know nothing else. Saraki has been in the business of looting banks for more than 30 years, unless someone cage him (he is an animal anyway) he will continue to misbehave. All these senators already bought several exotic cars paid for with looted funds. Why buying another exotic cars when teachers and government workers’ salaries not being paid? The answer is that these animals do not care about the country, the people but themselves. What a bunch a primitive animals!

    • Sword of Damocles

      The funny thing is WILD ANIMALS take care of their own, unlike these peculiar species calling themselves human. There are 109 Senators and not one of them bothered to say to their colleagues: we are the caretakers of this country, we must take care of Nigeria. We cannot in good faith, expend Nigeria’s precious resources on frivolous/vanity items. The minds of 109 senators is not developed, they think just like children. think about it, isnt this how children think? PT must follow up on this story to inform us if indeed these worthless, “reject-abortion” Senators indeed go through with the purchases.

  • ijelejames

    These senators are heartless evil animals.

  • Curseless

    It i amazing to see that these “enemies of the republic” have not learnt any lesson at all and this is more reason why everyone must petition his or her own assembly member to ditch this idea. Come to think of it, these are the same people who have looted their states while they are holding sway as commissioners , governors and ministers. The citizens pay for their housing, food,wardrobe on top of their fat salaries and as if that is not enough they now want these luxury cars while 70% of the governed can not boast of one meal a day. The Pope rides in a small fiat and do this in stride while the almighty Nigerian assembly members can’t tow the line of decency. This crap must be scraped, Period!

  • defash1

    Saraki is from rich family so he need to realise Nigeria is broke so he should slow down.

    • osric

      So he needs to confirm that Nigeria is broke oh!

  • A.C Inc

    AT THIS RATE OF STEALING, NIGERIA DOES NOT NEED GREENHOUSE EFFECT
    TO GO UNDERWATER VERY SOON, BECAUSE NO OTHER COUNTRY DOES THIS
    SORT OF THEFT THAT’S RUINED NIGERIA INTO BECOMING A BLOODY JUNGLE.

    In all of Nigeria’s history, beginning since October 1st 1960, no other criminal nears his gross infamy.
    In tandem with Dizeani Allison-Madueke and Goodluck Jonathan, this criminal has set new records.
    He is the only known criminal who single-handedly emptied 20% of Nigeria’s treasury at a go.
    This criminal of the year does not talk much. He just steals, and, he robs and then plunders.
    Ladies and gentlemen, the criminal of the year award 2015 goes to JIDE OMOKORE!

  • JJ

    House of Assembly or Den of Robbers?

  • robert. o. mafeni

    @segunilori:disqus

    Little wonder foreign investors are cutting
    and running from Nigeria, as shares plummet on the country’s fraud-inflated
    Stock Market. Nigeria is full blown fraud.

    Indeed, Nigeria is in a cul-de-sac.
    Buhari has no program. After six months that should be obvious. His alibi is
    tenuous. He says there is no money in the treasury. But money is hardly
    required to morally reform a country as an obvious first priority. Buhari says
    he plans to recover one trillion Naira from treasury thieves, but that’s a tall
    order.

    There isn’t any effective anti-corruption war going on outside newspaper
    headlines. Nigerians are regaled with horrific stories and no more, about who
    stole what when and how. With half a year spent on that dalliance, there’s
    hardly a good reason to be optimistic. Worse than that, Buhari’s
    anti-corruption war has a slant and therefore raising concerns of
    even-handedness and sincerity of purpose.

    • Babagana

      Make suggestions

  • Omotolaaraujo

    Nigerian Senators are thieving trash. They couldn’t care less about any of you. Find decent human beings to replace them; and you will be hard-pressed to find some.

    • Alkali

      @Omotolaaraujo:disqus

      See when the rains started beating Nigeria………..

      • ₦38.23billion developed legs and got missing in Central Bank under Sanusi Lamido Sanusi,
      • ₦1.97billion was paid out in cash and entered on Central Bank accounts as “inexplicable
      expense” by Sanusi Lamido Sanusi,
      • ₦20billion was paid out in cash as Legal Fees by Sanusi Lamido to persons un-known,
      • ₦3.086billion was paid out in cash by Sanusi Lamido as expense ostensibly to promote
      Central Bank image,
      • ₦160billion was paid out by Central Bank for self-determined activities,
      • ₦240billion was discretionally doled out at will as ‘donations’ by Sanusi Lamido,
      • ₦1.12billion was taken in cash and entered as paid to a non-operating airline for charter
      service,
      • ₦1.12billion was claimed as spent by Sanusi Lamido on luncheon for CBN police guards
      in one year.

      • Babagana

        Yet Sanusi also served Jonathan. U can’t exonerate the past government by any standard u may choose to measure it

      • osric

        It this is actually correct, I wonder why Jonathan did not nailed him? It was obvious after Sanusi spoke about the missing billions and was sacked as Bank Governor, GEJ could have jailed him then because they became sworn enemies then.

      • Northeast

        Proofs pls.

    • osric

      The honest ones after being elected will become senators and behave just like their predecessors. shut down the senate and have single chamber legislative assembly.

      • Dan Arewa

        Thank you. Plus, we should be checking them from time-to-time to ensure they are doing the right thing there. These our senators of today………… they are ‘DEVILS’.

      • Northeast

        I am with you.

  • Saydo Shan

    Na only MILIKI these people sabi.

  • Sparzo

    Excellent investigative article.

  • Dr Pat KOlawole Awosan

    President Muhammdu Buhari should try his best to stop the looting,stealing and scamming agenda of Dr Bukola Saraki and other leadership of current senate and House of representatives.Bukola Saraki with his late father looted Society Generale Bank and Bukola Saraki perpetrated massive thieving,embezzlement and looting of Kwara State public commonwealth for eight years with the conspiracy of his wife who participated in wrecking financial havoc to enriched themselves for eight years.There is nothing without end,Let Bukola Saraki purchase a private jet as senate president,he would eventually leave it befind like former Nigerian oil minister,Mrs Diezani Alison Madueke, with others who stole Nigeria to the state of bankruptcy.
    Power is transient.

  • Mike Adenuga

    The Federal Government has ordered the sales of uncleared imported vehicles into the country in the last two months. Those willing to get a vehicle at 39% off the actual price can call the Officer in charge..08035863619 or 08083510479 FOR INFO ON PURCHASE AND DELIVERY

  • Northeast

    Senators! Senators!! Senators!!! I called you three times to show you and all Nigerians that enough is enough for all the various maneuvers and atrocities u are committing against the Nigerian state. We are tired of hearing of syphoning of billions of taxpayers money through flimsy ways and for flimsy reasons. Now that the yet to be purchased vehicles are not with you, has it hindered your activities? We are in economic mess and you want make it messier for all of us.
    The masses are a permanent majority while you are a permanent minority, we can use constitutional means to apply some brake to some of you to allow for sanity in the system. It may not be the wish of all that such illegality should be engaged in.
    I urge all Nigerians of good will, not those with blood money in their hands, to engage in fervent prayers to God to clear all obstacles against the interests of the majority in Nigeria.