The Nigerian Presidency has dismissed a document that purportedly reveals a sum of ₦12,500,000 was transferred to President Muhammadu Buhari from the coffers of the Ogun State Government.
In a statement on Thursday, hours after the said document emerged and circulated online, Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu lamented that “fake news industry at work”.
Describing it as a move to tarnish the image of President Buhari, the Presidency spokesman explained that: “A certain document showing the transfer of ₦12,500,000 from the Coffers of the Ogun State to a ‘PMB Estate’ is being circulated to tarnish the image of President Muhammadu Buhari.
“The President Muhammadu Buhari (PMB) Estate is a large housing scheme in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital. It was commissioned by President Buhari in the course of a State visit.
“PMB Estate is owned by the Ogun State government, which honoured the President by naming it after him, of course that does not confer the ownership of the Estate to President Buhari”, Shehu explained.
Shehu appealed that “the gossipy online newspaper, peddling the falsehood that the President Muhammadu Buhari, the tried and tested anti-corruption fighter is the beneficiary of this cash transfer should be ignored”.
To further dissociate the President from the report, which has not been supported with facts, Garba argued that: “Before his election as civilian President, Muhammadu Buhari was a military pensioner and had never registered a company in his name or that of a proxy.
“To set the record straight, we spoke with the official who posted the clarification of the payment voucher on Twitter. He worked with the Governor Amosun administration. He confirmed that the payment was made from the Ogun State Revenue Account to The PMB Estate Account for some work done on the Estate. Absolutely nothing to do with President Muhammadu Buhar”, he said.
The President Muhammadu Buhari Estate is one of the projects initiated in the first term of fomer Ogun State Governor Senator Ibikunle Amosun, which he reportedly boasted would help etch his tenure in the sands of history.
Initially named Three Hills Estate, it was rechristened in honour of the president by the then Governor Ibikunle Amosun-led Ogun government.