The presidency has refuted a report by Sahara Reporters that the Nigeria High Commission in London paid the medical bills of the chief of staff to the president, Abba Kyari, during his recent visit for emergency medical treatment.
“The allegations are totally incorrect, misleading and a fabrication,” said Garba Shehu, the senior special assistant to the president on media and publicity in a statement on Monday.
Kyari, according to the statement, took care of his medical bills, taxi and accommodation by himself “in spite of the high office he occupies, even when there is no rule that says he cannot be catered for by government.”
“For the records, Kyari was rushed out of Nigeria for an emergency medical treatment on the fateful December 1, 2016. To receive him on arrival, the Wellington Hospital needed to have cash deposited, or in the absence of this, a letter of guarantee.
“In order to meet this condition, the Nigeria High Commission in London wrote the Letter of Guarantee to the hospital for treatment to commence. The role of the High Commission didn’t involve financial commitments on behalf of Kyari.
“The Letter of Guarantee from the High Commission was meant to meet the routine requirements of the Wellington Hospital since the patient in question (Kyari) didn’t possess the UK National Health Insurance,” the statement said.
“Apart from senior government officials, other reputable Nigerians are issued with such guarantee letters to hospitals. A guarantor is not liable unless there is a default, but this wasn’t the case with Abba Kyari who paid all his medical bills by himself as he had done on previous occasions.
“Hospital records are available for verification to show that the Nigeria High Commission in London didn’t spend a penny on Kyari, as its involvement didn’t go beyond the issuance of the letter of guarantee to the Wellington Hospital.”