Date Published: 03/23/11
23rd March, 2011
Press statement of the campaign for Democracy CD South East Zone.
CD call on EFCC/ICPC to commence discreet investigation into the alleged controversial Approval and Passage of (VIREMENT) 2010 Aprropriation Act by Imo State House of Assembly
The Campaign for Democracy CD South East Zone wishes to alert Nigerians and the world over the criminal and hasty manner at the #24,033,479,660 was passed without undergoing legal process through the first, second reading.
It is Universally criminal and illegal to seek retroactive endorsement of virement for expenditure which have already been arbitrarily made by the Chief Ikedi Ohakim led state executive.
The particular emphasis is on the recent presentation of the 2010 supplementary appropriation bill of #24,033,479,660 billion to the Imo State House of Assembly by the Executive, and other related matters.
The reprehensible administrative culture in which capital budgetary provisions for critical areas like education, health, agriculture and socio-economic infrastructure to positively impact the people and development in Imo State were diverted to recurrent votes where they are easily frittered away is unacceptable, wicked and repugnant to the true essence of democratic rule, good governance and conventional democracy.
The Governor had allegedly allocated and approved the said sum before presenting it to the State House of Assembly, the retroactive approval for re-ordered estimates being sort shows that the Imo State Government had seriously crashed the budgetary provisions for the following capital projects which includes:
1. Supervised Agric Credit loan scheme
2. Dam and Irrigation Development Programme
3. Ohaji/Egbeme/Oguta Regional Water Supply Scheme
4. Imo State University
5. Jumor and Secondary Schools (with an alleged school
fees increment to the tune of N6,000.00 per student)
6. University Basic Education
7. College of Engineering of Imo State University ,
Okigwe Campus/ College of Medicine , Imo State University Orlu Campus
8. Bureau of Poverty Alleviation
9. Imo Wonder lake and Resort Centre, Oguta
10. Micro Credit Development Fund among others
Going by uninterrupted and increased federal allocations and huge internally generated revenues, we are of the unequivocal view that these services are far from being provided to Imo citizens and that what we have on ground, is gross budget in discipline and fraudulent implementation.
It is an indisputable fact, that Imo State is next to none, in the area of acute and crushing deplorable state of roads, acute water supply, pure electricity network, 100 percent increase in the secondary school fees, this is in-spite of colossal sums, earmarked in 2009 and 2010, appropriation bills and their supplementary for their rehabilitation. The state is, equally, preeminence in the area environmental pollution and degradation as well as acidic and bacteria-infested water and as such, colossal sums provided for, in 2009 and 2010 budgets seemed to have gone into the tunnel capital flight.
The similar defects can also be seen in the areas of housing development, Imo Broadcasting Corporation (IBC) State Assembly Complex, the ongoing renovation of Government House and other projects.
However, the area that recorded tremendous budget disciplined implementation; is over-head costs.
CD has, carefully, observed that salaries and allowances of top members of the State Executive Council and Legislature as well as bloated non-civil service staff (PA’s) of the Governor and other states principle officers, are NOT being delayed,, but allegedly diverted to unorthodox sources, especially the purported recruitment of 10,000 youths into the pay roll of the state service, which our sources told us are not up to 3000 employees, with the payment of N2,000.00 for each applicant amounting to the whopping sum of N20 million.
It is sadly evident to note that the fundamentals of the Presidential democracy which were entrenched in rule of law, checks and balances and separation of powers, have long been seemingly marred in gross suspicion and gratification. In 2010 budget, its passage was done within weeks and with total influence of the executive, and prudent account of the “Kangaro” passage of N2403666 supplementary budget is called for discreet investigation by EFCC/ICPC and other security agencies.
The Abacha, Mummar Gaddafi, Mubarak and BEN Ali’s modeled-despotic and totalitarian administration in Imo State should be thoroughly investigated without further delay.
It is a historical fact that the Imo State House of Assembly is abetting the Executive in its financial indiscipline and recklessness.
From 2007, till now, their passage of budget into law was done in most controversial circumstances.
CD has carefully observed that most of the Executive sponsored bills passed into law by the State Assembly, were seemingly done with huge financial inducements. The recent supplementary bill is seemingly a good example.
CD wishes to condemn the recent disengagement of Indian Optical Doctors which provide free medical services to Imo (helpless) indigenes which started during the former regime of Chief Achike Udenwa at Old General Hospital Owerri, and call on the Ikedi Ohakim led present government to put his machinery in motion to pay their outstanding salary arrears, so that the doctors and their nurses will return back to provide services to the defenseless citizens.
CD, also wish to condemn the incessant increment outside the budgetary provision and maintenance of motor vehicles increased from N150 million to N300 million, they also spent N150 million in view of approved N70 million on “Gift” to Government Guests, we also call on EFCC/ICPC to investigate the alleged whopping sum of $50,000 bribe giving to Catholic priest and some Reverend Sisters in Owerri.
CD calls for more fierce genuine oppositions and criticisms against the state government led by Dr. Ikedi Ohakim as a way of making it to rise above being accountable, responsible and honest to the electorate or he should be voted out during the upcoming governorship election.
We also call on all the five States Governors to publish, without further delay. The prudent accounts of the state/federal allocation accruing to the state including the states expenditures since they took over power from 2007 till now.
The State Assembly should live above board and purge itself of seemingly unparliamentary rascality and lawlessness as well as bribery and corruption. The five Houses of Assemblies should stop being an appendage of the Executives, those overseeing the affairs of the state should realize that they will give accounts of their stewardship after their tenures.
DEDE UZOR A. UZOR
Campaign for Democracy CD
South East zone.