We begin this letter with these two quotes that centers on the effect of corruption on good governance; According to Pratibha Patil, “Corruption is the enemy of development, and of good governance. It must be got rid of. Both the government and the people at large must come together to achieve this national objective.”
While in Ramez Naam summation he said; “We’ve seen over time that countries that have the best economic growth are those that have good governance, and good governance comes from freedom of communication. It comes from ending corruption. It comes from a populace that can go online and say, ‘This politician is corrupt, this administrator, or this public official is corrupt.”
We feel pained that seven months after Governor Abubakar took oath of office, where he promised the people of the State that it is not going to be business as usual, we can confidently say that it has become more than business as usual, his government has been characterised by impunity, corruption, ineptitude, etc.
As concerned Bauchi State citizens, we feel we cannot continue to look while things are going out of shape, there is no other state that we have or we can call our own other than Bauchi State.
Having seen that the Bauchi State House of Assembly which are suppose to be an organ that have the power to checkmate the excesses of the State Government under the leadership of Governor Abubakar Mohammed have suddenly gone cold as they have turned their back over the brazen corruption and lack of good governance going on in the state.
In the view of this, we have decided to write this Open Letter to our State lawmakers so as to ask them why have they kept mute as well bring to their notice the many sins of the current Governor assuming the lawmakers claim ignorance of these things we are going to enumerate here one by one.
1. Four Billion Naira United Bank for Africa (UBA) Loan Appraisal;
We are aware that the Governor took a N4 Billion loan offered by UBA, it is indeed a notorious fact that the sum of N4 billion was granted to the Bauchi State Government at her instance for purpose of addressing urgent financial obligation confronting the State.
The grant of the said loan was alleged to have enjoyed the approval of both the Executive council of the State and members of the Bauchi State House of Assembly, even when it is an incontestable fact that the State Executive Council of Bauchi State has not been constituted till date.
Thereby we are asking the State Lawmakers to as matter of urgency investigate the following issues;
a. In respect to the issue above we request for the following under listed pieces of information; information relating to the comprehensive list of those urgent financial obligations addressed with the N4 billion loan in Bauchi; also information relating to the various area in Bauchi where those financial obligations arose, and how they were addressed.
b. Moreover, we need information relating to evidence of approval of obtaining the loan by the Bauchi State Government by the Executive Council of the State and the State House of Assembly.
2. Governor Mohammed Abubakar’s Official Trip to the Czech Republic;
It is an established fact that His Excellency, Governor of Bauchi State, in the person of Barrister Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar travelled to Czech Republic for what was termed an “official engagement” and sequel to this His Excellency’s travel to the Czech Republic.
Surprisingly, Abubakar Sadiq the son of the Governor was among the persons that travelled to Czech, according to the memo for the approval of the funds for the trip showed that Abubakar Sadiq collected estacode and travelling allowances.
But it is a known fact that Abubakar Sadiq is not an official of the government or the State; we hereby request the House of Assembly to summon the Governor for an explanation on why his son will collect estacode as well as travelling allowance when he is not an official of the Government.
3. The N8.6 Billion Naira Bailout Fund
It would be recalled that on the Dailytrust of August 25th Governor Abukakar was quoted to have told the newspaper that the Federal Government’s bailout to States is a mirage. The Governor speaking during his visit to Daily Trust Headquarters in Abuja said; “Bailout has turned out to be a mirage, actually. I am not criticizing the federal government, they meant well, they had a good intention to do a bail out, but they realized that they too needed a bail out. They just don’t have the money to do a bailout.
“So, after all the talks, all the grammar and everything, I was a member of the committee of four that discussed with the governor of the Central Bank after the last but one FEC meeting in respect of this bail out. All the promises did not materialise, at the end of it all, we were asked to nominate banks. And when we nominated the banks, we thought money was going to be paid into the accounts in the banks but at the end of the day, letters were written by the Central Bank to the banks to avail us with soft loans as a bail out.”
However, after all the talks against the Federal Government, Governor Abubakar is among the governors that has collected the bailout fund. States such as Adamawa, Kaduna, etc who also has collected their bailout like Bauchi has given out details of how their bailout fund will be used.
Unfortunately, for our own dear state Bauchi, the governor has refused to give us the breakdown of what the bailout fund he collected will be used on, we have not forgotten so soon, when the Governor stated that his government will be a government of transparency and openness, we indeed ask if this is the transparency and openness he promised the people of Bauchi State.
We are aware that the gratuities of the Bauchi State retirees have not been paid up till now, even after collecting the bailout fund.
For a matter of transparency as the governor promised, we are using this open letter to request that the State Lawmakers ask the governor to Give a vivid detail and account of how the bailout fund was expended.
To be continued