“The antics of our opponents will be judged” | The Kogi governor comes out kicking and screaming

A Premium Times investigation was searing about the Kogi governor, Yahaya Bello, accusing him, amongst other things on squandering the resources of the state on questionable and frivolous expenditure including on “furnishing, renovation and maintenance”.

Our 9 highlights from the investigation can be found here.

The governor’s response has been swift today.

In a statement signed by the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Kingsley Fanwo, the governor debunked the report by the news outlet and further explained what he has been up to since getting into office.

Full statement is below:

The use of the word “squander”, as far as I am concerned, is a clear abuse of the right to information. Every dime spent by the Governor can be accounted for. He has one of the lowest Security Fund in the nation which has even been underdrawn by his administration.

It is a public knowledge that Kogi State has been contending with serious security breach for the past ten years. As a result of the location of the state as gateway to many states of the federation, the state drifted into a criminal hotbed.

Also, years of gross maladministration and blinding embezzlement has left the youth bear, exposing them to all sort of criminal activities to survive. Kogi became a haven of robbers and kidnappers.

As a responsible government, the Yahaya Bello administration has taken security to the front burners by strengthening the security apparatus and architecture in order to make Kogi inhabitable for hoodlums and criminal elements.

Today, the security of the state has greatly improved and this has not come without a cost. Security vote is not usually a subject for public consumption and no cost can be higher than human lives. The Governor will continue to prioritize security because it is one of the main objectives of his election.

Let me also put on record that the Governor Yahaya Bello administration is contractually committed to fighting corruption and enthroning transparency in the polity. These are the terms of his social contract with the Kogi people.

If you have ever been to the Kogi State Government House in Lokoja, you will appreciate the rot of the architecture. It was not befitting of one of the most historic Government Houses in Nigeria. In tandem with the present administration’s drive to turn the economy of the state to a private sector driven one, we need to start our charity at home. People must love to come to our Government House to transact businesses.

The Government House is currently undergoing massive renovation to make it habitable and mirror the image of the state as a firs-rated tourist destination.

Governor Yahaya Bello is an accomplished business mogul, who believes he assumed power by the grace of God. He has reiterated his determination, not only to block corrupt practices, but to also ensure corrupt officials of government are made to face the wrath of the law.

The award of contract to renovate the Government House was justifiable. Weeks after his inauguration, Governor Yahaya Bello was operating from his home because the Government House wasn’t conducive. The award was to renovate Government House and not his personal house.

This administration has opened her account books to the people of the state. The Governor has constantly briefed the media on the income and expenditure of government. Massive constructions are ongoing in the state and the Governor is focused on ensuring transparent and active performance of this year’s budget.

The antics of our opponents will be judged by the people of the state who are already witnessing the benefits of the New Direction Programs. The bulwark of the Yahaya Bello administration is transparency.

Kingsley Fanwo
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor

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