Tinubu slashes travels cost by 60% for self, VP, others

Presidential spokesperson, Ajuri Ngelale, announced the development on Tuesday at a press briefing with State House correspondents in Abuja.

This development is coming a month after the controversy that trailed the federal government’s spending at least N2.7 billion to sponsor delegates that attended the United Nations’ annual climate summit, COP28 in Dubai.

It was reported that Nigeria’s delegation at the conference was 1,411.

Speaking further, Ngelale said the directive is part of cost cutting measures of the president Tinubu administration.

He added that the measure will affect the office of the president, vice-president, first lady, ministers and heads of agencies.

He said; “President Tinubu has directed that all state entourages be drastically reduced. This is not a request. It is a directive. The office of the president and staff will be affected. Vice-president, appointees are affected.”

“By this directive, there will be a slashing of expenditure on official travel by 60 percent.”

He said the president is limited to have 20 number of staff within and outside the country while the vice-president is limited to five aides outside the country and 15 within the country.

“The same applies to the office of first lady while that of the wife of the vice-president is entitled to five international and 10 for local trips.”

He also said every minister is limited to having just four members of staff on any foreign trip while chief executive officers of agencies of government are restricted to two.

Ngelale added that Tinubu has said he would no longer travel with huge security delegations to any state.

He said the directive also include that of the president travels to any state, the security in the state would take care of the his safety and the same applies to the vice-president and other government officials.

“President Tinubu has, by his most recent directive approved a massive cost cutting exercise that will touch across the entire federal government of Nigeria and the offices of the President himself, the Vice President and the office of the First Lady. It will be conducted in the following fashion,” he said.

“One, the official trips that will be undertaken within the country that is when Mr. President or the Vice President travels to any state within the country, the massive bills that accrued due to allowances and estacode for security detail coming from Abuja going and traveling into those states, will be massively cut due to the directive of the President, that the security outfits within states, whether it be police DSS, or branches of the military, will frontline his protective detail when he travels to those states, a major cost cutting initiative that will affect the Office of the Vice President as well as the office of the First Lady.

“Additionally, when any international travel is being approved, the following limits have been placed on all ministers of the federation.

“Four members of their staff, appointees and the like will be allowed to travel with a minister on official trip. For heads of agency that will be limited to two members of staff allowed to travel on an official trip.

“Henceforth, the president is insistent that the notion of government wastage, the notion of recurrent expenditure being in excess, the notion that government officials will be allowed to conduct their affairs in a way that is different from what we are asking of Nigerian citizens with respect to prudence and cost Management, those days are over.

“The President is insistent that the prudence of government officials must reflect the prudence and efficiency of the Nigerian citizens and this is the directive of the President.“

Asked if the new directive on restrictions will be put into an executive order and how it will be monitored, Ngelale said: “With respect to the adherence to this most recent directive of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, I believe we do not need to convince the officers of the federal government of Nigeria of the seriousness of the President with respect to how he will implement his directives”.

“If there is anybody who feels that the directive of the president is not binding on them, who feels that the president will not uphold this directive in implementation and seeks to test it, they will do so at their own peril.“

The break down is as follows

●FOREIGN TRIPS :

•President – 20 persons

•Vice-president -5 persons

•First lady -5 persons

•Ministers -4 persons

•CEOs of agencies – 2 persons

●LOCAL TRIPS

•President – 25 persons.

•Vice -president- 15 persons.

•First lady -10 persons.