In a surprising turn of events, President Bola Tinubu has reportedly violated the travel directive he issued just last week, aimed at reducing the number of individuals in his entourage during official trips.
The President had recently announced measures to cut down on the size of delegations accompanying him and other top government officials during local and international travels as part of the government’s cost-cutting measures.
According to the directive, the President stipulated that the number of individuals on his delegations should not exceed 25 for local travels and 20 for international engagements. Additionally, he emphasized the deployment of security agents based at his destinations for protection, rather than being accompanied by numerous security details from Abuja.
The policy had received widespread praise from the public, particularly in response to criticisms of excessive spending patterns, including Nigeria’s sizable contingent to the COP 28 climate conference in Dubai.
However, reports indicate that less than a week after the announcement, President Tinubu himself breached the directive during his trip to Imo State on Monday. It is alleged that more than 50 individuals were part of his delegation during the inauguration of Governor Hope Uzodinma.
In his first trip outside Abuja since the directive was issued, President Tinubu flew with at least 25 people on the presidential aircraft to Owerri, with an additional 30 officials traveling ahead of his arrival. Notable individuals on the trip included his son, Seyi Tinubu, senior special assistants, personal secretaries, and media aides.
Despite the breach, there has been no official response or comment from the Presidential spokesperson, Ajuri Ngelale, who had earlier announced the cost-cutting measures. Observers are keenly watching for any clarification or statement regarding this unexpected deviation from the newly implemented policy.