Gov Sani Laments Huge Debt Burden Inherited from El-Rufai

Gov Sani Laments Huge Debt Burden Inherited from El-Rufai

*You surrounded by incompetent aides, ex-gov’s son blasts Sani

John Shiklam in Kaduna

Kaduna State Governor, Senator Uba Sani, has lamented the huge debt burden inherited from the previous administration of Governor Nasir El-Rufai in the state, saying it has taken a toll on his government.

But in a swift reaction, former Governor el-Rufai’s son, Bashir, accused Governor Sani of shying away from his responsibility by always staying away from the state and hibernating in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.
Speaking yesterday at a town hall meeting, tagged: ‘The State of Kaduna State’, Sani said the situation is such that the government would have to borrow to be able to pay workers’ salaries.

 El-Rufai, who handed over to Sani in May 2023, governed the state for eight years.
According to the governor, the  debt burden includes $587million, N85 billion and N115 billion contractual liabilities, “sadly inherited from the previous administration”.

The governor, however, declared that despite the financial challenges, his administration  remains resolute in steering the state towards progress and sustainable development.
According to him, Kaduna State only receives N3.6 billion after deduction  of N7.2 billion for debt servicing.
“What we received from the federal allocation in Kaduna this month was N3.6 billion out of over N10 billion. The sum of N7.5 billion was deducted from our allocation to service debts.

“We cannot pay salaries without borrowing. Our salary bill is N5.2 billion. We will have to borrow N2 billion to be able to pay salaries,” the governor said.
Speaking further, the governor said he had approached President Bola Tinubu for assistance.
Sani said: “I have taken our cry to the president over these deductions. The president told me that the debt of $556 million is a World Bank debt and there is nothing he can do about it.

“He, however, promised to see how he could help us. Some of my governor colleagues have also promised to approach the President to assist Kaduna. In the next three months we will be collecting N3.6 billion from the federal allocation.
Sani said: “Despite the huge debt burden of $587million, N85 billion and N115 billion contractual liabilities sadly inherited from the previous administration, we remain resolute in steering Kaduna State towards progress and sustainable development.

“We have conducted a thorough assessment of our situation and are sharpening our focus accordingly.
“It gladdened my heart to inform you that, despite the huge inherited debt, till date, we have not borrowed a single kobo.
He said the priority areas of his government include safety and security, Housing, Education, Healthcare, and Support for Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

However, in what looks like a pre-announcement to an epic political battle ahead in the state, Bashir El-Rufai has accused Governor Sani, of shying away from his responsibility by always staying away from the state and hibernating in Abuja.
He also accused Governor Sani of surrounding himself with a retinue of incompetent aides appointed for political patronage.
Bashir said instead of admitting its incompetence, the Sani administration has resorted to deflect by raising alarm on a debt burden inherited from Governor El-Rufai administration.

In response via a series of tweets on his X handle (formerly Twitter), Bashir berated Governor Sani and his team, accusing them of incompetence, contract inflation and forex speculation, wondering why they were giving debt burden as an excuse for their poor performance..”

On the debt profile of the State, he responded: “FYI: He was the Senator from Kaduna who lobbied & approved the loans.”

Bashir further tweeted, “One would think that from all the FAAC allocations these unserious clowns have changed to dollars, debt would be the least of their problems.

“The current administration in Kaduna is building a banquet hall for N7billion and is lamenting about debt left by the previous administration.”

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