The Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir El-Rufai, has debunked claims in a section of the media that he walked out on the Vice-President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, when he tried to reach an understanding with him on a particular matter.
Speaking with some journalists at the Government House in Kaduna, on Tuesday, the Governor maintained that his relationship with the Vice-President was excellent, insisting that there was never a time he walked out on him. He attributed the speculation to his political detractors.
Noting that the authors of such stories were mischievous, he said: “I have never attended a meeting where the President and the Vice-President were all in the same room.
“I think the only time where the President and the Vice-president were around and I was in attendance was when the National Economic Council, NEC, was inaugurated by Mr President. He (president) came and delivered his address and left.”
El-Rufai equally denied reports that he exchanged slaps with his deputy, Barnabas Bala, saying he had known the deputy governor since 1976 and had never argued with him.
“We think alike and act alike. We are going on well; I think I did not make him like a spare tyre. If I am leaving the state, I write to the state assembly that he will be acting. He chairs the Executive Council meetings as well as the Security Council meeting. I was told this has never happened in Kaduna before and some people are not comfortable with that,” he said.
While clearing the air on the much-maligned religious bill, the Governor said it was sent to the state House of Assembly since October 15, 2015, adding that it was not a new bill as being speculated.
According to him, “It was first enacted in 1984 during the term of Air Vice Marshal Usman Mua’zu (retd) after the Maitsine uprising in 1982. The then military junta saw the need to regulate preaching in some states in the North.
“Many states are ready to do similar thing now. They have asked for the copy of our bill. I will not name the states.”