The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP has revealed how the administration of Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State allegedly wasted N121.055bn on controversial projects within two years.
The PDP, while lambasting the governor over his failure to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the State’s creation, also described those defecting to the All Progressives Congress, especially in the National Assembly, as ‘vipers that had bitten the fingers that had fed them in the past.’
The Chairman, Plateau State chapter of the PDP and a former Minister of Sports, Damishi Sango, made these claims on Tuesday during a press conference held at the party’s secretariat in Jos.
Sango said Plateau State indigenes could no longer boast of any of the beautiful democratic developments of the past.
He alleged that since May 29, 2015, when the Lalong’s administration came on board, it had “engaged seven different financial consultants with the same responsibility and yet without any impact on the internal revenue profile of the state till date.”
Sango said, “Two years of the Rescue Government has nothing comparatively close to the achievements of the PDP government. So bad it is that they cannot even celebrate 50 years of the existence of Plateau State. Instead, commercial prayer sessions were organised.
“In addition, funds are being wasted on celebrating carnival in a state where basic functions of state cannot be provided.
“Like the agama lizard, the government claps for itself and sees the carnival as an achievement! We have followed developments in other states where the golden jubilee celebrations are used to inaugurate special projects.
“The Plateau State Government, on the contrary, has nothing to inaugurate. Last year, we drew attention to the waste and plunder that has characterised the Rescue Administration, but we did not receive a word, in either denial or confirmation.”
The PDP insisted that the government of Lalong should provide explanation on some issues.
Sango added, “Where is the over N97bn received by the government in its first one year? Where is the N18bn taken from commercial banks in the first three months of the Rescue Administration? Where is the N4.5bn spent in the first one year on exotic cars?
“What is the explanation for spending N1.4bn on placing tracking devices on government cars, which on the average, per car is in excess of the cost of a new car? Why did government spend over N155m on insuring cars when the financial regulations do not allow for the issuance of government vehicles?”
He also alleged that N216,300, 881.79 was spent on remodelling “an already well-furnished Governor’s Lodge in Asokoro, Abuja.
“About N1.280bn was also spent by this government through direct labour just to re-carpet the Rwang Pam Stadium; N2bn was spent on fertiliser, yet none has been given to the farmers. N1.8bn was budgeted by this government to renovate the brand new Government House built by the PDP government,” he said.
Reacting, the Governor’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Dan Manjang, said Plateau State did not even recognise the PDP as an existing party in the state.
He said, “As far as the Plateau State Government is concerned, the allegation is frivolous and lacks basis because it is just politics. Let me say this strongly, as far as government is concerned, there is no PDP in Plateau State. What you have is a remnant of a group of people that are dissidents to their party.
“This is a remnant of a group of dissidents who lack the locus standi to speak on behalf of a political party like the PDP because the Sango group has refused to come to terms with the verdict of the Court of Appeal.
“So, the government does not even recognise them as a political party. When you stop to throw stones at every dog that barks, you will not move forward.
“We are not cut out for that; if they feel they have real issues, they should proceed to court, but not to go to the press and shout over mundane issues. Let them provide documentary evidence.”