You lied to Nigerians, Senate tells Amaechi

Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi inspecting one of the rail projects

The Senate on Wednesday vowed to tackle the Presidency over claims by Transportation Minister, Rotimi Amaechi, that the National Assembly was yet to approve loans that would be used for rail infrastructure.

In a statement by its spokesperson, Aliyu Abdullahi, on Wednesday in Abuja, the senate said Mr. Amaechi alleged that the non-approval of the loan was frustrating construction of Lagos-Ibadan, Ibadan-Ilorin-Minna-Kano rail lines.

It said that the minister’s claim was not only false but misrepresenting and contradictory to available facts.

It insisted that the minister must withdraw the claim which was made at the North Central Town Hall meeting in Ilorin on Monday.

The senate expressed disappointment that such statement could come from a cabinet member, adding that it was evident he was not in tune with the position of the government he was serving, on the matter.

PREMIUM TIMES reported Mr. Amaechi’s claims that the federal government had secured $7.5 billion loan for rail projects but was waiting for the National Assembly’s approval to access the loan.

The $7.5 billion loan is part of the $30 billion the Buhari administration has said it needs to finance infrastructure projects.

Mr. Amaechi on Monday provided details of the rail project at the North Central Town Hall meeting ‎held in Ilorin for the people of Kogi, Niger and Kwara states.

According to him, the loan was secured from a Chinese bank and the ministry is waiting for approval of the National Assembly to access the loan.

He said that $1. 4 billion of the loan was for the construction of the rail gauge from Lagos to Ibadan, while $6. 1 billion would be used on Ibadan–Ilorin–Minna-Kaduna– Kano line.

Contrary to Mr. Amaechi’s claim, the Senate spokesperson said, no such loan request was before the Senate.

“As at today, the only request for approval from the executive for loan was the one dated January 27, 2017 and signed by Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo.

“The request was seeking a `resolution of National Assembly for Issuance of one billion Euro Bond in the International Capital Market for funding of 2016 Budget Deficit’ and we immediately granted the approval.

“Also, in the letter quoted above, the Government mentioned the two rail lines cited by the minister as part of the projects for which the Euro Bond will be utilised.

“So, we do not understand what the grouse of Mr. Amaechi is.

“We view that statement based on false and misinformed premise strongly as a mere attempt to incite the people against the National Assembly,” it said.

The senate further said that “as a former Speaker of a state House of Assembly, we believe that a minister like Amaechi should always check his facts and refrain from making unguarded and inciting remarks against the legislature.

“What Nigeria needs at this point is for all arms of government to work together and create the synergy necessary to take Nigeria out of the present economic crisis we have found ourselves.

“Comments designed to infuriate one arm of government or incite the people against another arm of the government will do no one any good.”


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  • Poseidon

    That is what you will get when you listen to man who yaps first before thinking.
    The man that simplified everything before elections as not being “Rocket Science” now wants to throw the blame of his failure to the National Assembly.

  • Deansmart

    Why is Senate is so aggressive to every little comment made by executive even if amaechi made mistake there are many ways you can put the records straight without being so aggressive, some of our senators are too much of a thugs

    • sab

      Its you that is seeing it as a mistake. People like Rommel who worship their paymasters whether right or wrong, has run into conclusion that Amaechi is right and it was the NASS that lied. From the response of NASS, a discernible person can only try to reason well, or investigate properly to ascertain who amongst the two parties that lied. That is the way matured citizens do, not this type of hero-worship defense by Rommel.

      • Powerlessconscious

        Senate is full of thugs.

  • Julius

    lolz, you are doing a good job of messing up your own image everyday Mr &Mrs NASS . Nobody need Amaechi to see that. Nonsense.

  • Rommel

    This was the very senate that approved on January 18th the MTEF/FSP which they earlier rejected declaring it as empty document, we know and understand the game they play,but I will like to remind them that this insatiable quest for palm greasing will be their undoing one day,that era is gone,nobody is going to give them anything,they can go to hell,Amaechi did not lie against them,they were looking to benefit individually,it’s a case of deja vu

  • tony H

    Abeg, lying is breakfast, lunch ati dinner for Nigerians. We chop lying like nothing else.

  • concernednigerian

    Amaechi the Amanyanabo of ‘Ikwerre’ will say anything to be in the news just for journalists to print his photo in his Ijaw upper class attire. What a vain individual.

  • FirecloudOFGOD

    Senate, Lie or no Lie, if you all cut your bloated income by 30 percent, there will be no need for all these loans I dare say!

  • GbemigaO

    What do they expect frpm Amaechi anyway ? The Nigerian that hates money !

  • Powerlessconscious

    Very rubbish set of people. They turn media to battle ground to attack themselves. That why, nigerians too attack themselves. Bad leaders bad people.

  • NwaIgbo

    “Senalooters”, please open your budget to the public, then we can listen to you. Since 1999, you have been fixing our nonexistent electricity, you have been building the second Nigeria bridge, you have been screaming agriculture, you have been hyperventilating on non-existent constituency projects, you have been fixing our airports and seaports. All these are only on billboards and catchy new headlines but all LIES. You somersault over each other on new budgets, salivate about sharing our common wealth and head down to Dubai for you regular shopping spree.
    Sorry no one belies you den of robbers, we are freaking mad at all of you because we are hungry. Be scared!

  • Lorgne

    Petty bunch. Do your work.