By Tobi Soniyi
A former Governor of Abia State, Dr. Orji Uzo Kalu, has accused the current set of Nigerian governors of squandering their states’ funds on personal luxury, saying it was the main reason why they could not pay workers salaries in their respective states.
Kalu, who spoke to State House correspondents after a private meeting with the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, at the presidential villa, Abuja, on Friday however gave exceptions to some governors whom he said were fixing their states.
Speaking against the backdrop of the recent demand for more funds by the governors to meet their statutory obligations, Kalu said that the demand was unnecessary, revealing that the states already have sufficient funds to function optimally.
He said that governors have the penchant of drawing N35 million as travelling allowance, saying that unless they stopped converting security vote to personal use, states wouldn’t see development.
He said: “I think most of these governors are doing very well and some of them also are living in the euphoria of the office.You can see most of them who are very active, I don’t need to count them for you.
“The issue of crying for fund, honestly, in my opinion, these governors have enough fund to work for their people because if you check, the money drawn as security vote is excessive. They should stop that.
“Unless they stop drawing on security vote they will not have enough fund to work with and most of them are living in absolute luxury, which is not their money that they worked out for. So it is impossible to continue living in this manner.
“Most of the governors are even living in Abuja now, they don’t even live in their states, honestly. If you look at the books very well, in each trip they make, they will take traveling allowance of N35 million, which is un-heard of.
“What are you going to do with that. So, how are we going to progress. Not all the governors. I have gone through Rivers, I see that Rivers is hitting the ground. I have gone through Adamawa and I see Adamawa is hitting the ground.
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