The atmosphere at the Bauchi State House of Assembly may have experienced a new climate as a Congress for Progressive Change [CPC] member of the Assembly moved a motion on Thursday calling for the State governor of Bauchi, Malam Isa Yuguda to halt forced evacuation of the Students and staff out of the Abubakar Tatari Ali Polytechnic campus.
The Thursday motion by the CPC lawmaker came following outcries of the staff and students of the institution aptly captured by 247ureports.com in a report titled Trouble in Bauchi: Yuguda’s Men Attacked As State Polytechnic Shuts, published on Monday – that the students of the Abukakar Tartari Ali campus were ordered to relocate to the main campus of their school located along Jos Road in Wuntin Dada – to make room for the contractors to begin work. But the main campus had yet been expanded to accommodate the evacuated students as the Yuguda administration proceeded with forceful evacuation of occupants of the male hostel – asking them to move to a temporally site – while the occupants of the female hostel were asked to move to the male hostel – so that the female hostel would be demolished – to give way to a new building.
The lecturers and non academic staff on their part were ordered to evacuate their residences to other unknown residences. Of which the governor’s chief press secretary indicates that a temporary residence have been secured by the State – and that the rent for the new temporal site have been paid by the State government for two years. The workers turned the offer down, requesting instead, a more permanent arrangement. Usman Mohammed Isuh, the leader of the Joint Action Committee comprising the workers of the three campuses of Abubakar Tartar Ali Polytechnic who joined issues with the unfolding quagmire, added that “the government should have considered sites in the capital“ while also adding that “the manner the relocation exercise is being handled is not good“. The students, on their part, in response to the forced evacuation, physically attacked the contractor and some of the officials of the Bauchi State government who had come to the site. The leader of the students, Saliu Sulaiman in denying that the students acted violently insisted that the State government must”provide amenities at the site where we are being transferred to“ specifically, “exam halls to fit 800 students, 20 classrooms and library with capacity for 1500 students“.
Sources within the State Assembly indicate that the manner the governor and his men went about the exercise concerns them. “We are not with him on this project” added the lawmaker who explained that the insensitivity displayed by the governor and his men are suspect. In his take, there are other suitable sites for the teaching hospital, “the governor could locate the project anywhere he chooses. Why demolish a school like this?”
According to available information, the House of Assembly members will [today] act on the motion to ask the governor to halt work at the campus until the house of assembly investigates matter surrounding the project and evacuation of students. The Assembly will form a committee to investigate whether the site was the most appropriate and the preparedness of the state government in adequately housing the evacuated students and staffs. It is expected also that the lawmakers will investigate the overwhelming cost of the project at N2.6billion – and the 70% mobilization fee [N1.81billion] handed to the contractor, Babangida Zango.
N800million out of the N1.81billion of the mobilization were shared among top officials of the government who facilitated contract. But the chief press secretary denies the allegations as fictitious and callous on the part of the opposition who have joined the students to cause unnecessary havoc in the state. He charged the opposition to provide proof of the money sharing.
As gathered, some of the money was shared among the following persons:
- Secretary to the State Government – N180million
- Bashir Bugaji – N100million
- Alhaji Adamu Alkali – N50million
- Dr. Sani Malami – N50million
- Ali Jibril – N50million
- Commissioner for Special Duties -N30million
- Director SSS, Mr Ajayi – N20million
- Commissioner of Police – N20million [the former Commissioner was recently transferred but N20million was reserved for the CP]
- Director, Due Process – N8million
- Director, Engineering – N8million
- Director, Finance – N6million
Independent inquiry by 247ureports.com reveals the government of Bauchi State to be experiencing unpleasant administrative maladies associated with the recent earmarking of N17billion for security matters. A mass jamboree over the sharing and/or laundering of the N17billion appears aggressively underway. As reliably informed, the recent wave of high priced contract awards by the governor of Bauchi State – N7.9billion for Airport Construction and N2.6billion for Teaching Hospital, ties directly to the on-going attempt by the governor men at utilizing the N17billion security vote to finance the federal projects at inflated contract amounts – only to be refunded by the federal government when the project is completed.
“Where is all the money coming from?” said a source from the State assembly who also belong to the ruling party as the governor. He queried how the governor was getting the billions of Naira that he is throwing around lately. “Bauchi State does not have money. We know what we have”. The lawmaker pointed at the N17billion reserved for security vote as a scam, “a clear case of money laundering”. The House of Assembly member, as 247ureports.com was reliably informed, are presently having a private discussion over the matter.
Meanwhile, the chief press secretary to the governor has stated that the staffs and students of the school have meet with the state government – and that an understanding have been reached between the government and them. The terms of agreement were that the students will resume school without worry for force eviction. The contractor will continue work at the campus undisturbed. The staff will be relocated to a temporally location were the state government will settle the rent for two years. The homes at the campus will be demolished in the process. In the meantime, the state government will provide the amenities requested for at the main campus – before relocating the students.