The civil society organisation which dragged Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello and others before the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and other anti-corruption agencies for an alleged fraud of about N11 billion, Egalitarian Mission Africa (EMA), yesterday said the defence put up by the state government denying the allegations was laughable.
In a statement, the head of the group, Dr. Kayode Ajulo, said the defence put up by the government was laughable.
“First of all, we wish to make it abundantly clear that we stand by our report. Before we went to the anti-corruption agencies we had visited Kogi State for an on the spot assessment of the allegations and we found them to be true.
Are they saying for instance that the over inflated renovation contract of N1.7 billion was not awarded or that N1.2 billion was not paid to the contractor within two days? Or are they saying that a mere renovation of a three-bedroom bungalow for almost N100 million does not deserve scrutiny? What about the award of the contract without advertisement or tender? Or are they saying that there is any work going on at the moment on Agasa -Ukpogoro road for which over N1.4 billion has been paid? What about the billions of naira withdrawn allegedly to buy fanciful cars which cannot be found on the streets of Lokoja? We challenge the state government to show contrary proof. We have our facts backed by authentic documents and we are ready to go the distance with the state governor and his cohorts on this.”
Ajulo lamented the unprecedented orgy of financial sleaze in the state where workers and pensioners are being owed not less than seven months salaries.
“There are no good roads in Kogi. There is no portable water. The citizenry daily cry for good governance. Yet the government of the day turns a blind eye and goes on a voyage of unprecedented wastage and pillaging of the commonwealth of the state. What a shame!”
According to him, the anti -corruption agencies should swing into action by promptly preventing further pillaging of the state’s resources.