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Governor Seyi Makinde Slams Akpabio, Accuses Senate President of Politicizing Nigerians’ Welfare Amid N30bn Palliative Dispute

February 23, 2024

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In a recent statement, Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, refuted claims made by the Senate President, Godswill Akpabio, regarding the disbursement of N30 billion to state governors to tackle inflation and high living costs. Governor Makinde, speaking at the commissioning ceremony of a multi-billion naira Central Mosque in Iseyin, emphasized that neither he nor any other state governor had received such funds.

The governor, also the Vice Chairman of Nigeria Governors’ Forum, criticized the Senate President for politicizing the economic challenges facing the nation and shifting blame onto state governors. Makinde highlighted the need for real solutions to address the country’s economic woes, dismissing the unverified reports cited by Akpabio.

“This is not the time to play politics, as we have real issues that deserve real solutions. But yesterday, I saw the video and read in the news where the Senate President, Senator Godswill Akpabio, made a statement, though he said it was unverified report, stating that the state governments received additional N30 billion from the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, outside of our statutory allocation, in the last few months, to address food security.

“Please, listen to me loud and clear. I can speak for Oyo State and can also speak for any of my colleagues. This is because, as the Vice Chairman of Nigeria Governors’ Forum, I know when things are happening.

“If I want to play politics, I will keep quiet and let this slide, but I am not going to let this slide. FIRS cannot give money to any state. It is not possible. All revenues accruing to the country goes into the federation account and it is distributed to all tiers of government. The federal government does not give states money. The money in the federation belongs to all of us. It does not only belong to the federal government.

“So, if the senate president, who is the number three citizen in this country, could be quoting an unverified report, people are looking at us as leaders. This is the period that we are supposed to give confidence to our people. It is not the period to start playing politics or to start looking for scapegoats,” Mr Makinde said.

Disappointed in senate president

The governor expressed disappointment in the senate president for publicly uttering unverified reports.

“We need to engage with our people. If our policies are not working, we need to listen to the people and amend. So, if the number three citizen heard nothing but unverified report, why did he need to say it? Does his statement give confidence to the people or solve the problem of hunger and anger in the land?

“Let me say it clearly. As for Oyo State and for most of my colleagues, there is nothing like N30 billion being given to states for food security and I stand to be challenged.”

While acknowledging the N2 billion palliative disbursed to states by the federal government out of the N5 billion promised, Governor Makinde reiterated the importance of transparency and unity in addressing Nigeria’s economic challenges. He called for concerted efforts to alleviate the hardships faced by citizens, emphasizing the need for genuine leadership during these trying times.

“Yes, the federal government promised the states N5 billion and out of that, it only gave N2 billion and they are even asking that the N2 billion should be refunded right now. It is the responsibility of the federal government to manage the fiscal situation in Nigeria and manage the inflationary trend we have in the country right now.”

 

 

Credit: Premium Times

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