The controversial N5 billion presidential yacht, a subject of intense debate and criticism in Nigeria, has been confirmed to have been delivered to the Nigerian Navy, even though payment for it is in question.
The yacht arrived in the country in June 2023 and was reported to be intended for training purposes, as per the Navy’s Director of Information, Commodore Adedotun Ayo-Vaughan.
However, the allocation of funds for the yacht’s procurement is facing opposition in the National Assembly, with both the Senate and the House of Representatives raising concerns.
In the 2023 supplementary budget submitted by President Bola Tinubu, about N5 billion was allocated for the presidential yacht, leading to significant public criticism and debates.
The controversy surrounding the procurement has prompted questions about how and when the government will secure the necessary funds to pay for the yacht, especially given the current economic situation in the country.
Special Adviser to the President on Information and Strategy, Bayo Onanuga, clarified that the presidential yacht was not intended for President Tinubu’s personal use, as some had suggested.
He explained that it was an operational naval boat with specialized security equipment designed for high-profile operational inspections.
While the Senate and the House of Representatives appear to be in agreement on reallocating the funds for the presidential yacht, the ultimate resolution of this budgetary issue remains uncertain, as legislative approval is required for government procurement.
The Senate spokesperson, Yemi Adaramodu, noted that the Senate did not approve any funds for the presidential yacht in the supplementary budget.
The controversy has brought the procurement process under increased scrutiny and highlights the challenges of budget approval in the country.