By Abdullateef Ishowo
In this first part of the tripartite epistle, I shall put into perspective how the generalissimo of Kwara has been spinning people’s patrimony just within himself..
Of the four tyrants in Wole Soyinka’s satirical drama, “A Play of Giants”, Kamini was the most brutal. Savagely mean probably because of his knowledge deficiency. He jettisoned democratic virtues for dictatorship by acquiring more powers and mismanaging state resources. He was all in all as he hardly allowed any other organ of government to function. All cabinet members were inferior to him as he took pride in his self acclaimed superiority. Dignity of womanhood meant nothing to him as he violated them at will.
In the case of Kwara generalissimo however, he likes them young, beautiful and married. Those are vital credentials in making it to the cabinet; educational attainment, trackrecords and other important achievements are inmaterial.
You are hereby welcome to Kwara, where we presently experience the rebirth of Kamini. Like a reincarnated being, our own generalissimo assumed office like an innocentee, who knew next to nothing. He would drive himself around, carry his own bag to the airport, queue at the terminal and traveled in commercial. He would arrive at Central Mosque for Jumat service earlier than the entire congregation and sit outside; forming Mahatma Gandhi of Kwara, who represents nothing but peace. Surprisingly, all these have long been thrown to the dustbin, as our generalissimo now jets around the world with chartered flights and abuse opposition leaders using gutter ‘language’ typical of the lumpens. Character, they say, is a smoke, it’d manifest no matter how you try to cover it.
Kwarans would soon detect the undemocratic tendency in him when he started his sole administratorship with his refusal to form cabinet about five months into his administration. So such sensitive ministries as finance, education, works, etc didn’t have commissioners for months. No state executive council meeting, no security council meeting and he was approving monies to and for himself. When he eventually constituted the cabinet, it was the worst the state had ever had. Our fears were eventually justified when he sacked the cabinet barely a year later. Even when he eventually reconstituted the cabinet, ministry of education, as sensitive it is, had to suffer for months more before it was considered to be headed. It was that bad.
Ours is a situation of from frying pan to fire, as many of those who considered Abdulfatah Ahmed’s administration as being bad are now chanting _O suwa as they experience worse scenarios in all fronts under GAA; hence, the sudden consideration of the earlier rejected stone to gleamingly form the critical angle of the house. At the moment, transparency has taken flight from Kwara, which explains why the generalissimo keeps siphoning our common patrimony without remorse.
The financial statistics of the state between June 2019 and January 2023 glaringly shows how the government of GAA has received bountifully with infinitesimal justification for its use. GAA is using Kwara resources to rebuild his collapsed businesses prior to becoming the generalissimo of Kwara in 2019. Has it not become an open secret that he has concluded construction of an oil refinery in a neighbouring country? Time will tell.
In his article “For Kwara, 2023 is about facts and relatable history” published on January 2, 2023, Mr. Rafiu Ajakaye, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, toed the line of his barely educated boss by misinforming unsuspecting Kwarans, quoting wrong statistics that the current government received lesser federal allocation compared to the last four years of Ahmed’s administration. I wonder why our friend, who’s a better educated fellow than his boss would shamelessly follow such an ignorant path.
Setting the record straight, former governor Ahmed FAAC receipt, between June 2015 and May 2019 reveals the following:
June — December 2015 = N23,607,056,916.5
2016 = N30,083,630,965.86
2017 = N37,658,120,654.63
2018 = N49,859,910,786.90
Jan — May 2019 = N19,365,739,246.43
Total Gross Amount = N160,574,458,570
Whereas, as at December 2022, if the CPS’ figures on the allocation received so far by the government of GAA, it has gotten N203,113,105,761.03 from FAAC so far. This is without January 2023’s FAAC allocation to the state.
Relying on the data from KWIRS and NBS sites, IGR of the state under both administration reveals that: Ahmed’s administration garnered N17,307,987,696.76 in 2016;
N19,793,540,368.26 in 2017; N23,133,522,575.32 in 2018 and
N16,090,373,542.90 in the first two quarters of 2019. These totalled =N76,325,424,183.20 while GAA has realised
N14,556,357,866.00 in the last two quarters of 2019; N19,623,992,033.62 in 2020; N26,961,014,485.76 in 2021 and N34,198,834,646.19 in 2022. These totalled =N95,340,199,031.57 as at December 2022.
So, from both FAAC and IGR, GAA has gotten far more than Maigida as against what the CPS and his boss dished out.
Another thing that will make a reasonably concerned Kwaran to worry is the state’s debt profile under GAA. In just three years and few months, Kwara has bitten more than it can chew as the state may continue to pay debts many years after the administration of the most clueless governor the state has ever produced.
For the records however, peeping into the Sub-National Debts Documents from the Debt Management Office (DMO) Nigeria, will reveal the Kwara State debt profile till date.
As at December 2015, the Kwara State Domestic Debt Profile was N31,966,815,195.18. By June 2019, it has built up into N61,335,531,821.69.
The difference between the figures above is N29,368,716,626.51. This interprets that Abdulfatah Ahmed only raised the Kwara debt profile by N29bn between 2015 and 2019. Therefore, as at June 2019, Kwara State Debt Profile maintained N61,335,531,821.69.
The DMO data revealed that as at September 2022, the Debt profile has increased to N109,551,279,948.44 The difference between this amounts to N48,215,748,126.75.
The GAA government has been so lucky in terms of its financial fortune that no previous government has so enjoyed the largesse it is swallowing. So much that by now, one would expect a serious government to have conveniently commissioned at least, ten projects worth billions each. But I am not surprised, Mr. GAA has so far made a lot of money that he now converts same to personal use. It’s gathered that he’s almost through with construction of a personal oil refinery in Cote d’voire. Isn’t it so unfortunate that this is what the noisy O toge of 2019 would produce for Kwarans? Those who contributed to the emergence of GAA should be ashamed of themselves and be bold enough to come out now and apologise to Kwarans.
Apart from the huge sums realised from FAAC, IGR, borrowings and the inherited N5.2bn from Abdulfatah Ahmed’s administration, the government of GAA secured FG infrastructural fund worth N18.6bn, World Bank grant N11.6bn, RAAM project grant N3.2bn, Covid 19 donation support N2.2bn, Paris Club refund N5.2bn, Covid 19 donations from multinationals N2.5bn, EFCC recovery money N600m UBEC counterpart fund N7.1bn, 13bn of Sure-P refund and many other undisclosed funds.
Therefore, when one of the fearless O toge soldiers, Bar. Akogun Oyedepo and a former commissioner for finance in the state, Hon. Banu, were quoted to have said GAA’s administration has gotten more than N300bn and more than N500bn respectively, they were right in their own right.
Dear Kwarans, let me end the first part of this tripartite piece with the words of Jose Saramago, in his award winning prose, “Blindness”. He quipped, “I don’t think we did go blind, I think we are blind but seeing, blind people who can see, but do not see. The difficult thing isn’t living with other people, it’s understanding them. Perhaps only in a world of the blind will things be what they truly are.”
In the second part of this piece, I shall attempt to explain how GAA has dealt severely with transparency and traumatised it completely in different sectors of Kwara economy.
Abdullateef Ishowo is the Director Media and Communications, PDP Presidential Campaign Management Council,