Heckling, cheers as Buhari presents 2019 budget

Speaker of the House Representatives, Rt. Hon. Yakubu Dogara welcoming President Muhammadu Buhari to the Joint Session of the National Assembly, with him is Senate President Bukola Saraki (left) & Clerk to the National Assembly, Alhaji Mohammed Sani-Omolori, during the 2019 Budget Presentation at the National Assembly on 19th 2018. Photo: Speaker’s Media Office

The drama of the 2019 budget presentation took a major turn when President Muhammadu Buhari cautioned lawmakers at the joint session of the National Assembly to comport themselves as they are on television and being watched across the world.

Buhari was heckled by some lawmakers believed to be members of the opposition.

While some lawmakers stood up to give the President a clap, some others heckled him shouting, ‘Lies, propaganda’.

One of them called Buhari, ‘grass cutter’ in reference to the scandal which the last Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal, was enmeshed.

When the President was stating the achievements of his administration in the area of fighting corruption, some lawmakers shouted him down, saying, ‘propaganda, which corruption are you fighting’? ‘Grass cutter’

Buhari had also claimed that every state was being touched by the Federal Government in the area of road construction.

Lawmakers reject list of developmental projects

Buhari, while listing the achievements of his administration, was interrupted intermittently by protesting lawmakers.

As he mentioned each achievement, they chorused, ‘No!’ The development forced the All Progressives Congress lawmakers to clash as the opposition lawmakers booed the President.

When he said, “We have weathered the storms and made progress on every front,” They screamed, “Nooooo! Boooo!”

Buhari leaves abruptly….

As soon as Buhari concluded his speech, the session turned rowdy again. It was time for Saraki and Dogara to present their speeches but while APC lawmakers chanted ‘four more years,’ their PDP counterparts screamed, ‘no more years.’

After more than 10 minutes into the drama, the Presidential Guards Brigade band suddenly to play the National Anthem, even while Buhari was still seated.

The anthem marked the end of the ceremony, with Saraki and Dogara yet to present their speeches.

Security operatives whisked the President out of the chamber leaving the lawmakers behind.

THE PUNCH 

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