Governor accused of wasting N130bn in two years

Governor accused of wasting N130bn in two years

- Governor Darius Ishaku has been accused of squandering the resources of Taraba state

- This was the view of a coalition of progressive political groups and civil societies in the state

- They also accused the governor of not paying the dues of civil and public servants

A coalition of progressive political groups and civil societies in Taraba state have accused Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku of wasting N130billion in the last two years.

The group was responding to the series of achievements reeled out in celebrating Governor Ishaku's two years anniversary.

They stated that the governor cannot account judiciously for the over N150 billion received by his administration.

In the speech marking his second year anniversary, Governor Ishaku reeled out a number of his administration's achievements in road, power and water supply projects in the state.

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The group however described them as “fictitious, dubious polemics, seizure of other people’s projects and apportioning of blames for its massive and glaring failures.”

In a statement sent to signed by its chairman, Dr Goodluck Manasseh and secretary, Comrade Jibrin Mohammed, the group said despite all the polemics presented in his speech, Governor Darius gave no report that he has solved any or all the problems enumerated.

The group urged the governor to stop using mounting debts and empty treasury to explain his glaring lack of performance, misappropriation and mismanagement of scarce resources.

Part of the statement read: “In September 2015, the Darius administration received N9.6 billion naira as bailout funds from the federal government. In November 2015 it also received another sum of N10 billion as loan from Zenith Bank in the name of second bailout funds.

“In January 2016, again the government collected about N900 million naira loan as counterpart fund for the Primary Education Board. All these monies totaling over N20 billion, were not used for the settlement of salaries, pensions and other claims to civil servants and public officers as directed by the federal government but brazenly diverted to settle unexplained debts.

“There was no construction of new infrastructure or the rehabilitation of old ones as being claimed, until recently when the government started renovating the Wukari General Hospital .

“The state government receives an average of N3billion naira from the federation account and this will translated to about N72 billion during Governor Darius reign.

“In fact, an online financial news portal had reported that in 2016 alone, the Taraba state government received N62 billion naira. In addition the government receives an average sum of N1.5 billion naira monthly as budget support fund from the Federal Government, also amounting to about N36 billion.

“If this is added to the Paris Club refund and other sundry receipts from the federal government for the past two years, Taraba state would have received over N130 billion excluding local government funds. Where have these monies gone to? Where was it spent? Where are the projects? Why are salaries, pensions and gratuities not being paid fully?” the group queried.

They also questioned why the government used over N2billion on a green house project in an agrarian state like Taraba which has vast land, adequate rainfall, rivers and lakes.

“This type of project is only suitable for countries experiencing harsh weather condition like, low rainfall, drought and snowy cold.

“Two billion naira would have revolutionized agriculture in Taraba by the massive supply of tractors, land clearing equipment, supply of chemicals and seeds to thousands of farmers in the state,” the group stated.

The group also accused Governor Darius of managing the state in a manner as to rubbish the integrity of others, divide the people along ethnic and religious lines and promote distrust.

“By now, an administration which had spent two years in power, should have taken full charged of its responsibilities, but instead it has continued to sulk and constantly looking over its shoulders as if being chased down or stalked by perceived enemies,” it said.

Addressing the issue of worker’s salaries and wages, the group said: “As we speak, state worker’s salaries are being paid by a ghost salary consultant who is said to reside in Abuja or Israel.

“The ghost consultant has no visible office in the state as he is said to post salaries from Abuja. As a result, salary figures are determined and paid at will by the consultant.

“Civil servants neither enjoy yearly incremental rates nor variations or implementation of promotions but rather just lucky to receive salary alerts. Omitted or under-paid civil servants have to wait for months agonizingly moving from office to office trying to restore their full salaries.”

On road projects, the group said the only road constructed by the Darius administration is the 3 kilometers Kona road handled by Moulds Engineering works.

“The road envisaged to reach Lau has since stagnated at Kona. There are also other small adjoining roads handled by TARCMA, a state road maintenance agency, totaling less than two kilometers,” the group said.

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They alleged that Ishaku's administration neither initiated nor constructed the Bali to Gashaka road.

They also noted that the governor has refused to detoxify or moderate “the distractive and needless war of attrition with previous administrations, particularly former Acting Governor, Alhaji Umar Garba UTC.

“It is as if the government’s problems centered on UTC and yet Governor Darius did not directly take power from him.”

Meanwhile, the Change for Real (CFR), a political group of the ruling APC, has accused the national chairman of the party, Chief John Oyegun of compromising the screening and appeal panel's reports that had earlier disqualified Mr. Mudashiru Hussain, from contesting the Osun West senatorial ticket of the APC.

The group said what is current happening in APC as regard Osun Senatorial re-run “is no more democracy by impunity.”

In the video below, TV asks some Nigerians if they regret their voting choice during the 2015 election.


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