Senior members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kogi State have asked President Muhammadu Buhari to drop his support for Governor Yahaya Bello’s second term ambition.
The party members, under the umbrella body of APC stakeholders, said Yahaya Bello, as a non- performing and violent Governor should not be given the party’s second term ticket.
The governor, they claimed, had received about N344billion in the last 38 months of his stewardship, without doing anything with the allocations.
The governor is owing salaries, pensions and gratuities, they said, adding that there are no visible capital projects on ground anywhere in the state.
The petition, which was signed by the Convener of the Kogi APC Stakeholders Forum, Sen. Alex Kadiri reads:
“Governor Yahaya Bello was never elected by the good people of Kogi State. The death of Abubakar Audu made it possible for Bello to be Kogi State Governor. He has shown everyone that he lacks leadership abilities. He can’t fight for the rights and privileges of Kogi people.
“We request you to step down your support for the candidature of Governor Yahaya Bello for the forthcoming election in Kogi State.
“If the party fields him as a candidate, we are sure of losing the state to the opposition.”
The stakeholders gave insights into how the governor allegedly mismanaged the statutory allocations.
They said: “For the past 38 months including February 2019 Governor Yahaya Bello has not paid full salaries to the workers of Kogi State, despite the fact that the state received full allocation from the Federation Account as detailed below: Statutory allocation, Excess Crude and Value Added Tax (VAT) (N132b); Internally Generated Revenue by the state(N51b); total allocations to local governments(N111b).
“Total funds received by the state and local governments: N294 billion. The other funds received by the state are as below: Bail Out (N20b); Paris Club refunds 1, 2, and 3 (N19b); and refunds for road construction by previous governments (N11b).
“The governor had conducted multiple staff screening for both the state and the local governments. And from the report of the screening, the monthly wage bill (state, local governments and pensions) at the inception of the administration stood at N5.8 billion. After screening, this figure reduced to N4.4 billion.
“From the table above it is evidently clear that the total revenue received by the state government was more than enough to settle all salaries, pensions and gratuities with huge balance remaining for overheads and capital projects.
“It is very instructive to note that even without bailout and other funds received outside statutory allocation, Governor Yahaya Bello could have still paid all salaries including pensions without conducting multiple screening and inflicting pains on Kogi State and local government workers. This must hurt APC at the polls.
“Even after the screening, all salaries and pensions payments were paid using arbitrary percentages, thereby still owing workers huge outstanding salaries.”
The stakeholders said they had tried to seek presidential and party interventions to call Bello to order, but to no avail.