From Mika’il Tsoho, Dutse
In what appears to be a verbal war between the major political parties in Jigawa, over the incoming local government election, the People Democratic Party (PDP), accused the state government of illegal deduction and remittance of 27 local government councils fund into a private company ahead of the forthcoming local government council’s election.
The accusations were made by the PDP chairman of the Kazaure local government Honourable Mustapha Ibrahim Danshatu in an interview with newsmen.
“It has come to knowledge that the present administration under governor Malam Umar Namadi is illegally deducting some certain amount of money from monthly the federal government allocations of the 27 local government councils remitting it to a private organization to finance the campaign for the next year local government councils’ election”.
The PDP chairman explained that “we are reliably informed that the state government is forcing the local councils’ chairmen to pay a fixed amount of money depending on the local council to a private organization bank account”.
According to him, after being informed of the unconstitutional deductions and illegal remittance of such funds to a private organization, they made their findings and confirmed the information and even the purpose for collecting the funds is to finance local councils’ election.
“During our findings, we gathered that the funds are deposited into a private organization called Ushafam Investment Limited bank account at TAJ bank with account number 0057455884,” he said.
He called on the chairman of the Economic Finance and Crime Commission (EFCC) Mr. Ola Olukoyede to investigate the alleged misappropriation of the JIgawa state local government council’s finances.
Danshatu described the actions as disappointing, injustice, breach of people’s trust and oaths of office and disfranchisement of the citizens and local government indigents.
“We as good citizens, good samaritans and opposition party must not allow such illegality, unconstitutional and injustice to happen and continue”, he said.
When contacted by the chairman Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON) in JIgawa state, Honourable Bala Usman Chamo dismissed the allegations, and said “Is false and baseless”.
Honourable Bala Usman Chamo maintained that “this not true, in facts it is not true. As far I’m concerned nothing like this. We the local government council chairmen in the state are not contributing any money for the local government election campaign”.
According to him “Of course, there will be local government councils’ election in 2024, For sure we an authority with people responsibilities. And we are doing our best to meet their needs in accordance with principle and constitutional provisions”.
He said, “I don’t know of any account of contributing money for the financing for local councils’ election campaign in this state, in fact, anywhere in the country”.
The ALGON chairman who is also the Dutse municipal council maintained that “We in JIgawa state local council are receiving the allocation from the federal revenue collection in full”.
“Local Governments are contributing money as indicated in the constitution as statutory deductions. It contributes money to finance joint projects to contribute money to stabilization, this is the constitutional provisions”.
“We don’t at any time contribute or do not in any way agree to finance our campaign or any political party at any account”.
He noted that “I don’t know of any organization Ushafam or any bank account they own. The allegations are false, frivolous and uncompounded”.
Also contacted by the Special Advisor to the governor on local government affairs, Honourable Abdurrahman Alkasim denied any knowledge of the allegations.
The special adviser added that “the right person to comment on this is the commissioner. Because he is the accounting officer of the ministry for local government”.
“I’m a special adviser. Something to this nature may not come to me. You better meet the commissioner, he is in a better position to talk to you people”.
All efforts to speak to the commissioner ministry for local government and chieftaincy affairs, Honourable Ahmed Maikudi Hadejia to prove abortive.