President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday said a former president has questions to answer over the $16 billion power project. Buhari said this when he hosted the Buhari Support Organisation (BSO) led by Hameed Ali, comptroller-general of the Nigeria Customs Service. Buhari said:
“You know the rail was killed and one of the former heads of state was bragging that he spent more than 15 billion American dollars on power. Where is the power? Where is the power?”
Although the president did not mention the name of the ex-President, former president Olusegun Obasanjo, has answered. In a statement credited to Obasanjo’s media aide, Kehinde Akinyemi, released in Abeokuta on Tuesday evening. Obasanjo said;
“It has come to the attention of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo that a statement credited to President Muhammadu Buhari, apparently without correct information and based on ignorance, suggested that $16 billion was wasted on power projects by a former President.”
“We believe that the President was re-echoing the unsubstantiated allegation against Chief Obasanjo by his own predecessor but one.
“While it is doubtful that a President with proper understanding of the issue would utter such, it should be pointed out that records from the National Assembly had exculpated President Obasanjo of any wrong-doing concerning the power sector and has proved the allegations as false.
” For the records, Chief Obasanjo has addressed the issues of the power sector and the allegations against him on many occasions and platforms, including in his widely publicised book, My Watch, in which he exhaustively stated the facts and reproduced various reports by both the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, which conducted a clinical investigation into the allegations against Chief Obasanjo, and the Ad-Hoc Committee on the Review of the Recommendations in the Report of the Committee on Power on the Investigation into how the Huge Sums Of Money was Spent on Power Generation, Transmission And Distribution between June 1999 and May 2007 without Commensurate Result.
“We recommend that the President and his co-travellers should read Chapters 41, 42, 43 and 47 of My Watch for Chief Obasanjo’s insights and perspectives on the power sector and indeed what transpired when the allegation of $16 billion on power projects was previously made.”