by Azeez Adeniyi
The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) has said the era of using governors to score cheap political points was over.
The Head, Media and Public Affairs at NGF Secretariat, Abulrazque Barkindo, stated this in a statement in Abuja.
Barkindo decried the “incessant attacks on state governors’’ by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, saying they were heating up the polity and raising concerns.
He recalled that Dogara had challenged Governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai to make public his salary and security votes.
“The governor had earlier demanded that the Speaker should come clean on the expenditures of the National Assembly but instead Dogara published N346.57 as his January take-home,’’ he added.
“Of course, governors are human and can therefore not be adjudged to be all perfect, but the governorship institution is an integral part of this democracy, just as the House of Representatives.
“If the Speaker continues in this path of disparaging governors, he may ultimately endanger this same democratic process that brought him national prominence.
“It may interest the speaker to note that at the last Governors Forum meeting of April 17, governors agreed to sign into the Open Governance Partnership (OGP).’’
“The key indices of the agreement include fiscal transparency, anti-corruption, access to information and citizen engagement,’’ he added.
Barkindo said that the OGP was an initiative of a former managing director of the World Bank which sought to improve governance around the world, adding that Nigeria, under the present administration became signatory.
“Kaduna state has also signed and many more governors, including Mohammed Ibrahim, are positively disposed to it.
“This in summary means that the era of using governors as punching bags to score cheap political points is over.’’
Barkindo advised Dogara not use salary payment to play to the gallery in his attempt to bring down political opponents.