Enough Cash Dole-Out, Waste of Anambra State Funds

Advertisement

ngige

The Governor of Anambra State, Mr Peter Obi, has ironically turned out
to be the greatest financier of federal agencies, even when Anambra
State does not rank among those with robust financial profile. Yet,
there is no provision for replenishment of the spent funds. This fast
lane to further poverty in the state is a sad irony, because one of
the dominant issues in the Nigerian political air today is TRUE
FEDERALISM.

This coinage encapsulates a struggle to free more funds from the
federation account for states and local governments, where more
development takes place, rather than the federal government.


Granted, we have never heard or seen Governor Obi argue in favour of
true federalism, even as the immediate past Vice Chairman of the
Nigerian Governors Forum. But every indication is that the realization
of true federalism will favour Anambra State, not just because of the
republican nature of the Anambra sub-polity and the South East, but
because of the egalitarian structure of our society.

Yet, we wonder whether the fact that Gov Obi is not advocating true
federalism could constitute enough excuse to fritter away the little
that deservedly comes to Anambra State in the name of servicing the
same federal institutions which are supposed to be funded by the
federal government, holding the largest chunk of the Nigerian revenue.

The last we checked Governor Obi had provided huge cash, vehicles and
the like to over 30 federal institutions. These include the Nigerian
Army, funded to the tune of N100miilion; University of Nigeria,
Nsukka, which benefited from a battery of buses, just like Nnamdi
Azikiwe University (UNIZIK) Awka, The Police, SSS, Nigerian Civil
Defence, and so on.
The latest of such beneficiaries still fresh in the news is the
National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), which have benefited
five brand news vehicles and N10 million cheques, even when theirs is
a federal agency that draws direct funding from the federal budget.
This is in addition to monies donated to individuals in Anambra State
without explanation or back-up instruments.

When the federal government came up with the wasteful idea of project
tours, which unknown to many at the initial stage was to be funded by
the states, Anambra state picked the Bills for the Anambra phase of
the jamboree. But states like Edo and all states in the South West
with a better financial profile and yet responsive to their peoples
needs rejected that trap and deployed those funds to alternative
benefit of their citizenry.

We deprecate the brazen and inexplicable manner the Anambra State
government has been doling out jumbo cash and expensive equipment to
bodies outside its mandate with the resources of the state and dare
say that government is a continuum which does not necessarily provide
that the purse should be depleted each time a change of government is
imminent.

We have had reasons to speak out vehemently in the past ,even when
Even such naked display of cash was targeted at institutions relevant
to the mandate of Anambra State government, not knowing that the
situation will further degenerate to every passing organisation that
beckons.

How much more when the money is being siphoned to federal; bodies and
individuals who do not fall within the responsibility loop of fit into
the Anambra State government drawing funds not captured under any
heading in the 2013 budget of the state, framed into a law that must
be obeyed.

This cash dole-outs cannot be governance because it goes beyond
sharing money. The cash bazaar cannot be philanthropy because the
latter involves private funds and not a collective patrimony embodying
taxpayer’s money. These cannot pass for motivational prices because no
clear competition has taken place to merit same and no transparent
criteria have been evolved
.
It is profligacy and graft intertwined.

This is happening in a state where no borehole installed by the
government that emphasizes Millennium Development Goals in producing
potable water any of the beneficiary communities and the State Water
Corporation has been shut down.

This is happenings in a state where for lack of infrastructure and
running funds, the security situation lays surpine, while statesmen
are plebeians alike get kidnapped and killed, while government stands
by to celebrate funerals without living up to expectations.
This is happening in a state where nearly 150 staff of the State
Broadcasting Service have are owed for four months remuneration, with
a tricky lay-off plan that bothers on duplicity hanging over them.

This is happening in a state where the airport was allowed to breed
dust seven and half years after initial studies, with crippling
arguments on funding and prudence, not supported by the on-going cash
display.

This is happening a state that its capital is sinking under perennial
floods in every rainy season and the government employs third parties
to rationalise why that must wait.
This is happening a state where the Central Bank of Nigeria has
threatened to shut down the only existing mortgage institution owned
by the government for want of capitalisation, while the all state
budgets in the last six years have provided for the funding.

This is happening in a state where the only University owned by the
state, recently bedevilled by raping and killing of female students is
about to have most of its faculties shut down pervasive
underperformance . As we write nine departments of the university will
not admit students for the next academic session because regulators
have slammed the institution on accreditation, owing to poor funding.

In other words, THIS IS A STATE IN DARE NEED OF THE FUNDS!
We have heard speculations about conserving funds through
third-parties to fund the election campaign of a sitting official in
the government. We have heard speculations about post- March 2014
‘cushion provisions’ being seeded now through our common patrimony.
But we refuse to dwell on these speculations as the matter at hand,
serious as it is, calls for precision.

We therefore implore Anambra State House of Assembly:
• To arise to the constitutional duty of commencing an immediate
investigation into the sources ,titles heads, motivation and intended
and unintended consequences of doling cash to those in and outside the
responsibility loop of the state government.
• Halt the donation of any money to any institution outside that of
the state government, except as specifically provided for through
legislation in the Main supplementary Budget 2013.
• Receive and evaluate a budget performance report form the State
ministry of Finance for both the Main and supplementary budget and
cause same to be published.
• Request for vet, and publish audited accounts of all Anambra State
government institutions as and agencies as well as those of the local
government covering every step from allocation from the Federation
account to final draw-down.
• Take any other step which in its wisdom will halt this financial
drift currently being spearheaded by the Gov. Peter Obi.

The above is without prejudice to our liberty to proceed with all
other measures at our disposal including but not limited to judicial
probe, to conserve the resources of our state from the on-going
official pilferage which is not a respecter of fixed assets and going
concerns.

Anambra State money shall not miss the road again!!!

For: ALL PROGRESSIVE CONGRESS, APC, (ACN +ANPP+CPC+OTHERS)
Okelo Madukaife
State Publicity Secretary, ACN,
Anambra State

 

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here