Vice President Yemi Osinbajo continued his attack on former President Goodluck Jonathan over his government’s alleged sharing of about N150 billion two weeks before the 2015 general election.
He insisted that the corruption under Jonathan’s administration was enormous.
Speaking on Tuesday at the 2018 Ogun Investment Forum which held in Abeokuta, Osinbajo insisted on his claim, saying there was no way any country could survive under that amount of corruption.
“There is no country in the world that can survive on grand corruption on the scale that we are talking about. And that is why it is important for the federal government of Nigeria under President Muhammadu Buhari to reverse that grand corruption,” he said.
He also added that the $3 billion frittered away through the strategic alliance contracts between the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) Ltd and Atlantic Energy Drilling Concepts (AEDC) Limited could have been used for the construction of some major roads across the country.
The deals were between 2011 and 2015 and was said to have favoured the former Petroleum Minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke, who allegedly used some individuals as fronts.
He argued that with the money involved in the contract, the country would have conveniently built the Abuja-Kaduna-Kano Road; Enugu-Port Harcourt Road; East-West Road; Sagamu-Ore-Benin Road; Kano-Maiduguri Road; Abuja-Lafia-Akwanga-Keffi Road and Lagos-Abeokuta.
Insisting that there was grand corruption under the Jonathan administration, Osinbajo said:
“In one single transaction, the sum of N100 billion and 289 million dollars in cash were released a few weeks to the 2015 elections, it was not released as such, it was the money embezzled.
“When you consider that, in 2014, when oil prices were an average of 110 dollars a barrel, only N99 billion was spent on Power, Works and Housing. Agriculture and Transportation got N14 billion and N15 billion respectively.
“So, the total spends on capital in these critical areas I have mentioned was only N153 billion, and over N150 billion was released and shared within three days. This is enormity of what we are talking about; there is no country in the world that can survive on grand corruption on the scale that we are talking about. And that is why it is important for the federal government of Nigeria under President Muhammadu Buhari to reverse that grand corruption.
“So, we spent, in 2017, N1.3 trillion on capital, the highest spend in the history of the country, earning almost 60% less than we were earning in 2014. So, you can do far more with less if we are prudent with the resources of this country.
“Today, with less revenue but no leakage, we have increased funding capital in power, works and housing, defence, transportation and agriculture by as much as 400%.
“Today, we are two quarters out of the recession and firmly on the path of recovery. Our external reserves are at their highest levels in five years. Inflation has dropped for 13 consecutive months, manufacturing confidence is on the rise and in 2017, Nigeria moved ahead 24 places on the World Bank’s annual Doing Business Index. And the World Bank reported that Nigeria is among top ten reforming economies in the world.”
Following his earlier attack, a media aide of Jonathan, Reno Omokri, had lambasted the vice president saying he had surrendered his lips to Satan and should be called to order.
Omokri, in a statement issued on Tuesday, described the vice president as a liar and challenged him to produce evidence of his claim.
His words: “It is sad that the vice-president has again surrendered his lips to Satan to be used to spread slander and lies. Nigerians may recall that lying is the most consistent achievement of Professor Osinbajo’s almost three years as vice-president.”
Omokri called on the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG, Enoch Adeboye, to call Osinbajo to order.
Osinbajo is a pastor of the church.