Former President Goodluck Jonathan has frowned at reports in the media that the planned probe of budgetary allocations to the Aso Rock clinic by a committee of the House of Representatives included his administration, stating that he had no questions to answer on the issue as he was not responsible for implementing the 2015 budget.
Jonathan said the repeated mention of his name was the usual practice of making him a “scapegoat for the misdeeds of others”.
Recall that following revelations by Aisha Buhari, wife of President Muhammadu Buhari, that the Aso Rock clinic was shockingly lacking in basic consumables like cotton wool and syringe despite billions allocated to it, the House of Representatives had instituted a probe which it said would cover budgetary allocations to the clinic including allocations in the 2015 budget.
Responding to the development, Jonathan claimed in a statement signed by his media aide, Ikechukwu Eze, in Abuja on Saturday that he was not responsible for implementation of any of the budgets under consideration as he had handed power over to Buhari.
The statement read in part: “The House of representatives resolved Thursday 12 October, 2015, to probe 2015-2017 allocations to Aso Rock Clinic and some media reports are needlessly dragging the name of former President Goodluck Jonathan into it.
“We had thought that the media should be the first to remind Nigerians that since Jonathan left office on May 29, 2015, he had absolutely nothing to do with the implementation of the budget for that year.
“For emphasis, the 2015 Appropriation Bill which was passed by the parliament in April was signed into law in May, 2015.
“And since the procurement process, based on the new procurement law, takes at least three months to complete, there was no way Jonathan would have had anything to do with the budget implementation for 2015, before vacating Aso Rock Villa on May 29, 2015″.
Eze added that with the way people made damaging insinuations regarding Jonathan on contentious developments in the polity, it would appear as if Jonathan had been in office since independence and probably still in power.
“We expect media houses to always do proper investigations to avoid the convenient choice of always using Jonathan as the scapegoat for the misdeeds of others”, he said.