- James Faleke has accused Kogi governor of running a government that does not care for the welfare of its people
- He alleged that the governor donated six cars and 2 million naira each to masquerades in his hometown, despite owning workers' salaries
- Kingsley Fanwo, spokesman of the governor, however, debunked Faleke’s claims asking him to stop spreading falsehood about the Bello-led administration
James Faleke, running mate to late Abubakar Audu, candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the November 21 election in Kogi state, has accused the governor of Kogi state, Yahaya Bello, of donating six Toyota Venza cars and cash gifts of 2 million naira each to masquerades in Okene, the governor’s hometown.
Faleke said Bello made the donation to masquerades during the last Ekwechi, masquerade festival, in December, 2017, the Cable reports.
He said the governor is being insensitive to the welfare and aspirations of Kogi people.
He wondered why the governor who has not been able to pay workers’ salaries for several months could go ahead to buy gifts for masquerades.
He said: “I honestly don’t know what is happening in our state. We thought the governor (Alhaji Yahaya Bello) would heed popular call to settle all outstanding salaries and pensions in the state last December as he promised after receiving the Paris refunds of close to 12 billion naira only for him to pay 40 percent of two months.”
“So where did the rest of the money go? Next we heard was the news of the 6 Venza cars he bought and presented to masquerades in Okene through their minders along with 2 million naira cash to each of the masquerades!
“How else can one be so insensitive to the welfare, yearnings and aspirations of his people?”
Faleke added that the state government, having denied owing outstanding salaries, recently released a fresh list of “cleared staff”.
He explained: “What this means is that those staff whose names were just released had been without pay for the past two years when the screening exercise began. So who is fooling who?”
Faleke, therefore, called on the governor to desist from wasteful and unproductive spending and concentrate of improving the lives of Kogi people.
He said Governor Bello should: “…turn a new leaf this year by re-ordering his government’s priorities away from childish, wasteful, unproductive extravaganza to meaningful statecraft aimed at ameliorating the current unacceptable level of pains being inflicted on the people of the state.”
Kingsley Fanwo, Governor Bello's spokesman, however, debunked Faleke’s claims.
He, in turn, urged Faleke to stop spreading rumour about the Bello-led administration.
He explained: “The governor went to celebrate an important festival with his people. He loves his people. He has always been with his people. He is a proud Anebira who would not trade his place of birth on the altar of political desperation.”
“The administration of Yahaya Bello is poised to rebound our state and consolidate his gains of the last two years. We have serious business to do here. Kogi is our baby, we won’t allow any knife on it.
Fanwo further accused Faleke of reporting the state governor to President Muhammadu Buhari.
“You went to the villa to report the governor that he was de-marketing the party in the state. But in the past few weeks, thousands came out to declare support for the Governor. Your frustration is understood but please stop sinking further. We love you. You are our brother,” he said.
NAIJ.com previously reported that a 61-year-old civil servant, Alphonsus Ameh, who received his sack letter on Friday, December 29, 2017, from the Kogi state government, had allegedly died of high blood pressure at the Federal Medical Centre (FMC) in Lokoja, the state capital.
Ameh, a director with the Kogi State Pensions Board, was among the directors and permanent secretaries who were suspended in February 2016 by the state government.
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