FG ROADS REFUNDS : KEBBI GOVT. REACTS

FG ROADS REFUNDS : KEBBI GOVT. REACTS

FROM : AYODELE AJOGE BIRNIN-KEBBI.


Government authorities in Kebbi State have cleared the air on the controversies generated at the floor of the National Assembly over the refunds of money spent on two Federal roads in the State.

Alhaji Abubakar Chika Ladan, who is the State Commissioner for Works and Transport, at a Press Conference on Sunday evening disclosed that the controversy generated on the floor of the National Assembly was a needless argument if transparency is anything to go by.

Ladan to Newsmen that the roads in convention are Dabai-Mahuta-Koko ( Federal: Route A.I), a 91km road which was constructed between 2006-2011 at the cost of N5.099 billion by the then administration of Senator Adamu Aliero, but was largely completed by the administration of Governor Saidu Usman Dakingari in 2011.

The second road which is malando-Garin, Baka-Ngaski-Warra (Federal : Route F.201), a 42km road was constructed by the administration of Governor Saidu Usman Dakingari, from 2008-2013 together with a 6span bridge (90m), at the cost of N2.291billion.

When this present administration came in, in 2015, according to the Commissioner, it discovered that the Federal Government was refunding States governments for Federal roads Constructed by them in their domain.

This was what promoted Governor Bagudu to direct the then Commissioner of Works, Alhaji Atiku Bunu in 2016 to contact the Federal Ministry of Works to request for refunds of the two roads and three others constructed by the present administration of Governor Atiku Bagudu, all totaling N10.08 billion.

The Commissioner explained that the Federal Ministry of Works could only approve the roads that were constructed before 2015 for refund, when the Federal government ordered the stoppage of all Federal roads constructed by States government.

The approval according to him, was granted on the 4th of August, 2020, and the Ministry thereafter recommended for the refund of the two roads constructed to the time of N6.7 billion to the Federal Executive Council for approval, which was granted on the 7th September, 2022.

Adding that due to liquidity problems, the Federal government sought for the approval of the National Assembly to pay Kebbi State using promissory note which is now before the National Assembly for consideration.

"It can therefore be noted that His Excellency, Senator Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, or any Official of Kebbi State Government did not, at any time, claimed to have constructed the roads. All we did was to pursue the State right of compensation, as was done to other States". He said.

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