Yusuph Olaniyonu, the Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, has said his principal voluntarily stopped his pension as governor of Kwara state in 2015.
He made this disclosure in order to clear the air about reports which claimed that it was the agitations by certain groups that prompted Senate President to end the payment of his pension.
In a statement issued on Wednesday afternoon, Olaniyonu clarified that as far back as August 20th, 2015, Saraki wrote to the Kwara State Government to stop the payment of his pensions.
He said: “As a responsive and responsible government official, the Senate President has always toed the moral and legal high-ground in all his actions. This is why since he left office as Kwara State Governor in 2011 — even before his directive that his pension payment be stopped on the 20th of August, 2015 — this pension was always used as a scholarship and education endowment fund from which first-class graduates and law school students have benefitted.
“The money has also been utilized for the purchase of JAMB and GCE forms for secondary school leavers seeking to further their education.
“Additionally, the decision to stop his pension was done entirely of his own volition two years ago. in fact, Dr. Saraki had at an interactive session with journalists in Ilorin early 2016, he mentioned the action he had taken on the pension.
“This is why the recent insinuations in the media attributing the Senate President’s actions to a July 14th, 2017 statement by some group, is another futile attempt to claim credit where there is none to be claimed.
“Moving forward, it is necessary that the Media is guided by the fact that irrespective of the payment of his pension or not, the Senate President will continue to work on empowering his constituents and the people in Kwara State, as he has always done, with or without any pension payment.
“At this point, it is important that the Media endeavors to be specific in their reporting and not ascribe needless justifications or commentaries to otherwise independent actions” Olaniyonu stated.