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The love lost between President Muhammadu Buhari and the leadership of the National Assembly seems not to have ended as Buhari says he rates them low.
In an interview with the Nigeria Television Authority, NTA, Buhari said he rates senate president Bukola Saraki and Yakubu Dogara, speaker of the house, “very very low”.
The President noted that they held Nigeria to ransom for seven months without passing the budget.
“I told Saraki and Dogara that by holding the budget for 7 months, you’re not hurting me, you’re hurting Nigerians? In terms of patriotism, I rate them very very low,” Buhari said on Monday night.
The president said the national assembly wanted to show they were the government and not the executive, and he made his displeasure known about their conduct.
Buhari and the leadership of the national assembly have had a long run of disagreement from one issue to the other.
Upon election of the eight national assembly, President Buhari and the leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) had preferred candidates for the leadership of the assembly.
Their preferred choices — Ahmad Lawan and Femi Gbajabiamila — were defeated in a political game that threw up Saraki and Dogara, who were former members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
By 2016, the assembly was rocked by a budget padding scandal, which pitched the executive against the legislative arm of government.
The senate in 2017 stopped the screening of Buhari’s appointee, following the president’s refusal to sign some bills of the national assembly into law, and the refusal to sack Ibrahim Magu as the chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).