PEOPLES DEMOCRATIC PARTY (PDP)
Since its first year in Office, as part of the Democracy Day celebrations, the PDP government of Sule Lamido had established a tradition of informing the people of Jigawa state details of government programmes and activities.
This entailed various participants and stakeholders in the government from party officials through elected officials right to government appointees presenting themselves for Radio interviews during which they made presentations relevant to their respective areas of activity and providing the audience across the state the opportunity to interrogate them. This has become a ritual that the people of Jigawa have come to take for granted from the 1st of May of each year.
Unable to match this simple act of democratic openness and accountability, Governor Badaru resorted to addressing a press conference on the 28th of May 2018. In that press conference, he raised a number of issues that added to the disappointment of the enlightened Jigawa populace by resorting to dropping innuendoes and engaging in the old blame game.
It could be recalled that the Jigawa APC administration at its inception in 2015, claimed that it inherited a debt of about N117 Billion from the PDP government of Sule Lamido. This stands in stark contrast to the May 28th, 2018 claim of inheriting a much smaller debt of N31 Billion. Had the governor suddenly lost his arithmetic ability or has he, like his mentor developed a serious problem of amnesia? We would hope that our governor has not succumbed to the rampaging epidemic of the ‘Lai/lie’ bug that has found residence in the APC!
Governor Badaru further stated, “I nearly ran away due to huge debts, uncompleted projects Lamido left behind.” This statement was misleading because the PDP Lamido administration never borrowed a penny in its eight years. We challenge the APC and its government in Jigawa state to bring forward evidence of borrowing from any individual or financial institution to substantiate the“huge debt” claim by the governor. We also challenge him to tell the people of Jigawa how much of the ‘debt’ he has actually cleared.
Lamido made it very clear in May 2015 that he was leaving unpaid contractors’ claims to the tune of about N14 Billion. This same amount of money was being expected from the federal government as a refund to the Jigawa state government for the construction of the Dutse International Airport. Governor Badaru would need to tell the people of Jigawa state what he did with the N14 Billion he collected from the federal government as airport refund.
Three years as a governor and Badaru is yet to know that government is a continuous process. He still talks of uncompleted projects that were initiated as trap to ensure his government failed. If Governor Badaru found these projects as unworthy, why did he not revoke them?
The APC federal government is undertaking the construction of a multi billion dollar power project at Mambilla that will not be completed until six years from now. Come May 29 next year, should we classify the project as ‘uncompleted’ and any money due to contractors as ‘debt’? The railways rehabilitation project would run for even longer number of years and require funding well beyond the most optimistic estimate of the lifespan of the APC federal government. How do we classify this, Mr. governor?
Governor Badaru tries to project an image of integrity when we all know of his antecedents as a contractor for the Saminu Turaki government. Where is the integrity in a man who supplied ambulances to Jigawa hospitals that were so old that they could not even be driven from Dutse to the beneficiary hospitals?
If Governor Badaru wants to know what is integrity in government, he should ask his Permanent Secretary Government House who also served Lamido in the same capacity. He could equally ask his Director General, Due Process Bureau who also served Lamido for eight years in the same capacity and who happened to be his college classmate. Surely these two should be able to provide him with whatever dirt he wanted on Lamido.
It is very clear that Badaru has been unable to find any blemish to attach to the Lamido government. We challenge him to come out with what he has in a court of law otherwise he should spare the people of Jigawa state from his antics. Failing that, he should restrict himself to such demeaning acts like retrieving the car that was being used by Lamido’s wife as his singular act of vengeance!
On the issue of saving N11 billion from ongoing projects in the form of discounts, the people of Jigawa State are witness to the drastic drop in the quality of works ever since the Badaru administration forced ‘discounts’ on contractors. Drive on any road in Jigawa that was started by Lamido and completed by Badaru and you would know what we are talking about! After all, no sensible contractor would operate at a loss.
Still on this issue of discount, did Governor Badaru’s bother give the Jigawa State government a discount when he paid himself for the white elephant project called the ‘Jigawa Independent Power Project’? It is, after all, common knowledge that Badaru supplied the dilapidated machines for the so-called power project that now litter Dutse, Gujungu and Kazaure. We recall that paying for this project was the first official assignment of our Contractor-Governor.
It is worthy of note that Governor Sule Lamido paid workers their salary for the month of May 2015 before he left office on May 29, 2015. It is also on record that payment of workers’ salaries had never been an issue in Jigawa State from the time of the APP government of Governor Saminu Turaki up to the end of the PDP Government of Sule Lamido. Why then should Governor Badaru claim credit for paying workers’ salaries? Whatever happened to ethics and morality in government? What should have happened during Governor Badaru’s press conference would be an explanation as to how Jigawa state bailout funds were utilized.
Governor Badaru made further attempts to claim undue credit when he tried to appropriate the Sule Lamido programme of giving free drugs to pregnant women and children up to five years of age. He equally tried to claim credit for the Sule Lamido initiative of providing a health facility for each ward in the state. Is Governor Badaru unable find anything he initiated that was worth celebrating such that he has been reduced to ranting and raving?
On a number of occasions, Governor Badaru had confessed that he was a victim of sorcery, juju and marabouts and that this was the reason why he had not been able to perform as a governor. We wonder whether Badaru is manifesting more serious symptoms of some mental disorder as result of these spiritual assaults. How else could one explain these rants?
Finally, we demand that the Jigawa State House of Assembly should commence impeachment proceedings against Governor Badaru on account of his self confessed mental illness.