Senate shops for N50m Toyota SUVs for the109 legislators

The Nigerian Senate is perfecting plans to import Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) from Toyota for the 109 legislators, Herald Nigeria has learnt.

It was learnt that an ad hoc Welfare Committee set up by the President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, asked the chamber to shun SUVs being assembled by local firms as official vehicles for members.

The panel headed by Senator Abubakar Kyari was constituted immediately after the inauguration of the 9th National Assembly.

A member of the panel who spoke to The Punch said, “It was true that we considered suggestions in some quarters to patronise the automobile firms in Nigeria but the fear of their products’ quality, stalled the plans.

“Since the vehicles would be given to members on loans, we should be careful not to purchase vehicles that we may not be able to guarantee their quality and durability.

“There was a time that the House of Representatives purchased ‘Made-in-Nigeria’ cars for their members but we know the complaints that greeted the exercise.

“We want to avoid such situation that is why we settled for the importation of brand new jeeps that would meet the standard and specification of our members who would pay for them from their salaries and allowances.

Also speaking, another member of the panel, noted that arrangements for the purchase of the new vehicles would be concluded before the lawmakers resume on September 24.

It was learnt that the Senate was considering the purchase of Toyota Land Cruiser SUVs for its 109 members at an estimated cost of about N50m each.

This implies that the red chamber would require about over N5.5bn for the vehicles including a few additional ones for the Presiding officers.


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