Nasarawa State appears reeling from a political turmoil brewing between the Congress for Progressive Change [CPC] Governor of the State, Al Makura and the lawmakers of the Peoples Democracy People [PDP] dominated State House of Assembly. Information available to 247ureports.com indicates that the lawmakers of the State Assembly have begun consideration of a possible impeachment of the Governor over what the lawmakers term “the governor’s reckless handling of State affairs and resources”.
According to the lawmakers, the governor arbitrary hijacked the entire financial transaction of the State – sidelining all persons that are constitutionally required to be involved in the financial transaction. In particular, the lawmakers charged that the governor ‘dubiously’ transferred all duties of salary preparation of civil servants and local government workers away from the office of the Accountant General and the Ministry of local government area [LGA] – and transferred them to office of the Head of Service [HOS]. Legal experts within the Nasarawa State assembly explained that the transfer was unconstitutional and thus illegal.
In a move deemed as shady, the governor, following only weeks after his swearing –in as governor, compulsorily transferred all the Directors of Personnel Management [DPM] for the entire 23 LGA and 16 development areas – away from their respective stations at the LGA and development areas – and brought them to the LGA service commission office located at the State capital in Lafia. Sources within the State government point to the transfer as a deliberate act “to conceal his financial activities”. The lawmakers who frowned at the arbitrary transfer asked the governor to reverse the transfer of the DPMs “but he refused”.
On the security of the State, sources within the legislative chamber point suspiciously to the N100million claimed by the governor as being spent for the security in southern Nasarawa. The lawmakers have indicated that they have yet to see any visible signs of the money that the governor has spent in the area. As gathered, the governor promised to stage a military formation to help quell the tension between the Tiv, Fulani and Egon people but “the governor appears docile”. The House Committee Chairman on Information, Mohammed Baba Ibaku spoke on the state of insecurity. He said the lawmakers are concerned that the “governor appears helpless in the face of bloodshed”. 247ureports.com gathered that the military men stationed at the respective stations at the sensitive areas have pulled back because of non-payment of allowance from the State government.
The lawmakers, in reacting to the governor’s standoff demeanor to the State Assembly has gone ahead to set up a Committee to investigate the governor’s financial activities and alleged funds diversion. The motion to setup the Committee was moved by Hon Anthony Obande. The Committee was setup the last week of May 2012. Principally, the Committee is charged with probing the State and LGA Joint Account to determine how much was spent – and to investigate the seizure of civil servants salary for 10 months.
In addition, the lawmakers are said to be uneasy with the manner the “governor secretly brought in a consultant to collect the State’s Internally Generated Revenue [IGR]”. The lawmakers question the legitimacy of the consultant. As gathered, the Nasarawa State Board of Internal Revenue was the one collecting the IGR. The consultant’s terms of agreement allows them not to pay tax [VAT] – the agreement was done in secrecy. The consultants were given office space at the Nasarawa board of internal revenue.
Interestingly, the governor appears to be putting up a fight against the lawmakers. The governor, according to sources at the government house, has turned to the Nasarawa State land reform policy to hunt the members of the legislature. “Most of the properties belonging to PDP lawmakers are marked for demolition” stated the source. It is uncertain the extent the threat of property demolition has had with the lawmakers in dropping the impeachment threat.
Meanwhile, independent inquiry conducted by 247ureports.com reveals what appears a misnomer. This is as it was gathered that the governor may be battling to return to the PDP. It will be recalled that the governor had defected to the PDP only three months before the gubernatorial election. The governor had picked the gubernatorial forms from the PDP before dumping the PDP. The import being that the governor finds himself battling with the former PDP governor of Nasawara State, Akwe Doma for the hearts of the lawmakers. It is believed that the lawmakers are loyal to the former governor – and are determined to frustrate the present governor out of the governor seat.
The governor on his part has joined forces with a onetime governor of the State, Adamu to battle Akwe Doma and his boys at the state assembly. Although the Governor Al Makura has denied wanting to return to the PDP, informed stakeholders indicate that the governor is determined to return to the PDP and to dislodge the control current exhibited by Akwe Doma over the lawmakers and the affairs of PDP in the state.