Presidency prepares staff retirement programme
Tobi Soniyi
Former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, on Thursday said he did not sign budgets into law without seeing the details while he was in power.

Obasanjo, who was responding comments credited to the National Assembly that during his time, he signed budgets into law without seeing the details, said the purveyors of the news needed to be contacted the second time to prove the authenticity of the information.

The former president, who spoke with the State House Correspondents after a private meeting with president, when asked why he was at the Villa, said he came to share some of his experiences with the president.

“You know that not too long ago, I was out there. I have come to share some of my experiences with him,” he said
When asked what the experiences were, he replied, “Ha! Ha! If I say I shared experiences with my wife, will you ask me wetin I talk with my wife?”

Obasanjo said he could not comment on the 2016 budget because he was yet to read the details.
“Before I will be able to tell you something about the budget, I have to read it and know what it contains and know what to talk about,” he added.

On the delay in signing the budget, Obasanjo said the constitution allowed the president to continue with the budget provided he did not go beyond the previous year. This, he said, could be done up to the middle of the year.

He refused to comment on the ongoing war against corruption being waged by President Buhari.
Meanwhile, the presidency has commenced a vocational and entrepreneurial programme to prepare its staff adequately for retirement.
The 81 prospective retirees are being trained by the presidency on livestock, fisheries management, personal finance planning and other useful skills and vocations at the workshop which opened yesterday.

Declaring open the two-day workshop for State House staff who are about to retire, the Permanent Secretary, Jalal Arabi, said the programme was also designed to prepare them mentally and psychologically for retirement.

“What the State House has set out to do is to commence a process of early pre-retirement training for potential retirees.
“This is in the firm belief that adequate planning for retirement will make life after retirement much more attractive,” Arabi said.
The permanent secretary said the overall aim of the presidency was to ensure that all staff undergo pre-retirement training at least 3-4 years before their retirement.
“This approach is based on the realisation that it usually takes about three years to incubate and develop most business ideas,’’ he added