FG to pay hundreds on “governance tour” Estacodes-Maku

Minister of Information, Labaran Maku

Several millions may have been spent already on the tour

More than 100 officials visiting states of the federation on the “good governance tour” are entitled to a government-paid Estacode, the group, led by the Information minister, Labaran Maku, said Sunday.

The remark provides the first official confirmation huge sum was being channeled into the programme dismissed by many as a scam and waste scarce public funds that could have served better needs.

Agreement reached ahead of the tour, was for the federal government to foot the Duty Tour Allowance, DTA, of at least 120 officials and their transportation to all the states, while the host governors provide feeding and accommodation, the tour team said in a statement.

Those on the list include officials of the ministry of information, and relevant federal government offices, civil society groups and journalists.

“The support of the NGF(Nigerian Governors Forum) for this exercise as agreed by members was the provision of logistics, majorly accommodation and feeding, to effectively facilitate the project tour of their respective states, while the Federal Ministry of Information takes charge of transportation and payment of Duty Tour Allowances for the NGGT delegation,” the statement signed by the Coordinator of the group, Samuel Ajayi, said on Sunday.

The statement did not mention how much was proposed for the trip.

The government claims the tour is providing a rare opportunity for the public to be acquainted with projects achieved by the federal and the state governments, while engendering the so called citizen-government engagement fora.

Controversy grew over the tour and its cost, after the Edo state governor, Adams Oshiomhole, said he turned down the team’s request that Edo state provides the accommodation and feeding as agreed.

In an apparent reference to Mr. Oshiomhole’s stance, his Delta state counterpart, Emmanuel Uduaghan, said on Thursday all governors had given their commitment to the project.

The team’s said in its statement it was seeking to make put the record straight, expressing surprise at Mr. Oshiomhole’s remarks.

“We are surprised that Governor Oshiomhole chose to make such declaration only a few days to the NGGT visit of Edo State because wherever we went to, citizens were excited because of the opportunity and the platform the tour provided for them to freely express their opinions, suggestions or offer advice to those in government on how they are being governed,” the group said.

The group rejected the tour was illegal, and advised that states that had no interest in the program had the option of opting out without “blackmailing the Tour Team.”

“In the event of any state opting out, the Tour Team will proceed regardless to inspect Federal projects,” the group said.

 

 


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  • STRIKER

    continue to loot one day u will account for your deeds before our creator

    • Lincon

      Shameless Maku

  • GO

    This is nothing but a waste of public fund. Good governance tour? What a heck does that mean?

  • Chuks Enyinnaya

    It bodes on mediocrity when people begin to rant and make insinuations where it is not necessary. This tour has been educative and an eye opener to certain issues of national importance which we would not have known about. Especially as regards Power, federal roads, railway etc. Most states have little or nothing to show started things, knowing that it would be a great shame on their govts. People now have the opportunity to air their views and use social media platforms to put issues right as regards the claims of democratic gains by either the state or FG. I wonder why all these dusts are being raised when we know how state govts embark on spending spree. Ȋ̝̊̅ saw a deltan yesterday, addressing their governor about an area that has never seen tarred road despite its strategic position in the staten such are some of the gains this tour is bringing to the fore. Suffice to say that the detractors are either hiding something or are scared that their over hyped performances will be put to shame by those of the ruling party. We are watching and taking notes.

    • Aishatu M.A.

      In what sane country do you think this would happen? 120 people on a mission across 36 states for God’s sake! How many people do you need to carry out an inspection? Every form of critique, even if it is constructive, is simply dismissed as the job of detractors. Do you need a special envoy to check what is going on in any state? Worse off, what will they do with the final report? Dump it of course like all the other reports that have been dumped. May God help this country.

    • So because state governors embark on spending spree, you and your boss have found a good way to utilize the spending jamboree the wasteful governors have decided to treat you to? Its a pity. Since state.governors have been spending wastefully without any dusts, you too can do it. Congrats Chief Honourable Senator Chuks. This is why the whole world sees Nigerians as being very corrupt, because even the media personnel who should be the third eye, are deeply enmeshed in corruption. If some naira changes hands, the story line changes immediately. The worst critic of government will become the no. 1 defender of a corrupt government. I don’t blame you anyway. I don’t blame them either. I blame poverty. I blame hunger because of the many years of suffering before you got an invitation to serve. Integrity has to be thrown out the window and you do everything to protect your ‘work-chop’. This is the reality of a country that prides itself as the giant of Africa. A country with so much money but where the media stay hungry and a looking for one corrupt politician to extend an invitation. Na wa o.

  • majeed

    Thumb up to Gov.Oshiomole for speaking the truth.

  • Frank Maduale

    It’s unfortunate that Edo state governor decided to play politics with such an intelligent initiative as Maku’s Good Governance Tour.
    The tour is the best thing to have happened to information dissemination under this democracy.
    I took time to watch the town hall meeting in Delta State yesterday on NTA. It was a wonderful platform that gave citizens of the state the golden opportunity to ask all manner of questions bothering on good governance and development.

    They asked Maku about the East west Road. They asked about the Saoele Power plant and the dreading of the River Niger. They complained bitterly that the host community of the NIPP power plants are in darkness. They also fired shots on Gov Uduaghan over internal roads in the state.

    The minister and the Governor took turns to respond to all the questions one by one. Nothing could be more democratic. I was impressed and wondered why Gov Adams Oshiomhole of Edo state would talk ill and have problems about hosting such a programme.

  • Jeff Arobam

    The big question is, who are these hundred people? I have picked up interest in this matter since the Edo state Governor raised the dust on Maku’s tour. I have read both accounts and arrived at very logical conclusions.
    I believe Oshiomhole got it wrong on this one. There is nothing wrong with the tour whatsoever. if anything, it falls withing the purview of Minister of Information to inform Nigerians about the activities of govt. it has been argued seriously that there is a huge communication gap between the people and Government. Maku seeks to bridge this gap by undertaking a tour that will show proof of projects and the state of uncompleted ones.

    In a bid to ensure fairness, I understand Maku extended invitation to all media houses in Nigeria to join him in the tour and ensure accurate reporting of projects unfettered. Any objective minded person would agree with me that journalists from different media houses can account for almost 80% of the tour delegation. This includes NTA/FRCN crew which broadcasts the citizens forum/Town hall meeting in each state live.

    I have watched the tour and could attest to the wide media coverage. I have also seen NUJ leaders and representatives of Civil society groups speak at the town hall meetings. I understand the DTA’s serve as small compensation for the journalists who left their offices to travel with the Minister to so many states.

    • Akin Bamidele

      Yes. The minister said this much during the Delta town hall meeting. I also saw the NUJ SEC GEN clarify that their members constitute a huge chunk of the so called 100 man delegation and I have no reason to doubt him because Newspapers alone could have more than 20 correspondents on the tour.
      People are becoming unduly critical over every Step of this administration and it is not good. Payment of DTA’s and estacodes have been an agelong practice for govt officials/journalists on official trips and I see no reason why this is generating so much heat even when the actual amount is yet to be ascertained. Besides, this tour forms core of the responsibilities of an information ministry to manage public information with civility and proof.

    • Do you need a Federal Minister to tell you about what is being done in your state by the Federal Govt or your state.governor? To me, this is a sheer waste of money. What do you need 120 people for, even if they’re foreign media personnel? the corruption in this country stinks. Why would I need Maku to come to my state to tell me about what my Governor has done, or what the President has done in my state? Why must it be a jamboree? Yet, some Governors see nothing wrong about this. People who are in the team and some fanatics like You Jeff Arobam, Chuks etc, see nothing wrong in wasting public funds because somehow, it trickles down your pockets. What do we need all these people for in the team at all? Were they asleep when these projects were being executed? Or do they think we were asleep when the projects were executed? If Labaran Maku wants to give Nigerians the opportunity to answer questions, he can used 5% percent of the resources they’ve just wasted to organize a phone-in programme where Nigerians can ask him questions and also suggest their solutions. Instead, they prefer to waste both the naira, the manpower and the airtime on a programme that adds nothing to the people. Absolutely nothing. For example, when they went to my state, he was lamenting aimlessly and rather pitifully about some projects we already knew about. What did he add? Nothing. It pains me that even people who should see things clearly are still blind. I’m still wondering what the Maku guy is doing with 120 persons running around the whole place and making noise about nothing. It can only happen in Nigeria my country.

      • Jeff Arobam

        You have shown how much of a disaster you would be if we ever the misfortune of having someone like you as a minister of information in Nigeria.

        First, you proceeded on the faulty assumption that the tour was for the states hence your insistence that citizens don’t need a tour to see projects. For federal projects, this is obviously not true. There are certain areas in Nigeria that you may never go throughout the life of this administration. So how do you ascertain what the FG is doing in such areas?

        A Lagos resident may never know about the ongoing Dualisation of Kano-Maidugri road or the state of ongoing rehabilitation of Enugu-Ph expressway.

        Secondly, your suggestion for use of phone in programmes was the most lame and laughable argument I have heard in a very long while. Phone in programme? You will use a phone in programme to showcase state of ongoing projects? You will use a phone in programme to chide non performing contractors? You will use a phone in programme to evaluate performance of other tiers of govt? You will use a phone in programme to assemble citizens of the state to ask their governors salient questions about good governance in the states?
        That is the stuff stand up comedians are made of.

  • Chuks Enyinnaya

    Ȋ̝̊̅ also picked interest in this matter and will truthfully say that the amebolike approach Oshiomole used is a shame because he should have shown maturity and left the team to take care of their feeding and accomodation instead of trying to make Maku look the Villian while he plays the hero. The NGGTour is a good one, if we remove sentiments, sectionalism and party affiliations, we will agree that it is something everyone should be looking up to. The amount they are quoting on paper is ridiculous, because those are the prices of five star hotels and Ȋ̝̊ know that we don’t have 5 star hotels in any of the visited states, and a matter of fact, no one expects the media houses and civil society groups and other partner organisations to fund a national project. Accommodation and feeding is the least any state govt can do to assist an honourable project.

    • Nig is rich

      Someone like Chuks Enyinnaya either you are benefiting from the fraudulent program or you have be blind by too much poverty.The question is how many projects has the FGN carry out in every states of the Nation that they want to inspects,the states or the contractors can give them any info they want without them visiting any of the states,these clueless rulers are just wasting our money for nothing,there have been so many commitee set up by the FGN,there reports are not been act upon,Denmark has population of 5.5 million,their nation resources is not up to what we have in Delta state not to mention Nigeria,Denmark is one of the richest country in the world,while Nigeria thieves rulers stealing our nations wealth and wasting our resources,while the masses are suffering.The only idea Nigeria rulers have is how to steal public money.