he Federal Government has said it purchased 10 SUVs valued at N1.15bn for the Republic of Niger in order to enable the country to safeguard its territory in the best interest of Nigeria’s security.
TheNewsGuru.com (TNG) reports the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed made this known on Wednesday while fielding questions from State House Correspondents after the Federal Executive Council meeting chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari.
“Let me just say that, over time, Nigeria has had to support its neighbours, especially immediate neighbours, to enhance their capacity to secure their countries as it relates to us.
“This is not the first time that Nigeria has supported Niger, Cameroon or Chad, and the President makes an assessment as to what is required, based on the request of their president and such requests are approved and the interventions provided is to enhance their capacity to protect their own territory as it relates to security also to Nigeria.
“Nigerians have a right to ask questions, but also the President has a responsibility to make an assessment of what is in the best interests of the country. And I cannot question that decision,” Ahmed explained.
A report published by Sahara Reporters had revealed how President Buhari approved N1.15bn to purchase 10 Toyota Land Cruiser V8 vehicles for the Nigerien government. The record which was sourced from the ‘appropriations’ page of the Ministry’s website showed that in July 2022, N1,145,000,000 was approved for payment to Kaura Motors Nigeria Limited to supply the SUVs.
I went ahead to confirm the account details provided in the document and sure enough it checks out.
Why is @MBuhari's government purchasing vehicles for a foreign government? Is this an extension of the same nonsensical decision-making that saw it prioritise a railway to Maradi? pic.twitter.com/kQJORSSHRx
— David Hundeyin (@DavidHundeyin) August 2, 2022
It also revealed that the President had okayed the disbursement since February 2022. The news has sparked outrage amongst Nigerians who argued that funding a foreign entity should not be the government’s priority amid the harsh economic realities.
2022 Toyota Landcruiser V8.
These are the vehicles that Buhari has bought for Niger Republic "to fight insecurity."
— David Hundeyin (@DavidHundeyin) August 3, 2022