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PHOTOS: Protesters storm Kaduna govt house, demand El-Rufai’s arrest

Protesters under the auspices of Kaduna Citizens Watch for Good Governance (KCWGG), on Thursday, stormed Government House, Kaduna, to demand the probe and arrest of…

Protesters under the auspices of Kaduna Citizens Watch for Good Governance (KCWGG), on Thursday, stormed Government House, Kaduna, to demand the probe and arrest of Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, former Governor of the state.

They asked incumbent  Governor Uba Sani to invite officials of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and other relevant agencies to arrest and prosecute El-Rufai over his administration’s indictment to the tune of N423 billion.

The protesters sang solidarity songs just as they displayed placards with different inscriptions.

Some of the inscriptions read, ‘We will occupy all MDAs to chase out all indicted persons in the report’. ‘Stop servicing all loans that did not follow due process before they were obtained’.

On March 30th, 2024, Governor Uba Sani revealed during a town hall meeting that the state faced a substantial debt burden of $587 million, N85 billion, and 115 contractual liabilities inherited from the previous administration.

This, he said, led to over 70% of the state’s allocation being used to service the inherited debt.

In response, the Kaduna State House of Assembly formed an ad-hoc committee to investigate the state’s financial transactions from May 29th, 2015 to May 29th, 2023.

The committee, led by Barrister Henry Danjuma Magaji, submitted its findings on June 5th, 2024, revealing significant unaccounted funds and irregularities in financial transactions.

The report highlighted mismanagement of funds, diversion of loans, overpayment of contractors, and lack of transparency in the usage of state funds.

While addressing journalists shortly after arriving at Kaduna government house, Chairman of the protesting group, Comrade Victor Duniya said, “We, the Kaduna Citizens Watch for Good Governance appreciate your presence as we express our grievances today. Our state has endured financial mismanagement, abuse of power, and a growing debt burden for the past eight years.

“The most troubling finding was the diversion of 10.5 billion naira meant for pastoral nomadism and the construction of the Milk Industry at Damau, Kubau LGA, for the construction of Galaxy Mall, Kaduna. Additionally, the report uncovered overpayments to contractors, payments to unregistered companies, and funds disbursed for work not completed, amounting to over 36.3 billion.

“The report also revealed large sums of money withdrawn from the state treasury without proper documentation of its usage. Furthermore, an expenditure of over 11 billion on a non-existent MRT transportation scheme was documented with no evidence to support it.

He then called on governor Sani to implement relevant sections of the report that fall under his purview and officially forward the findings of the committee report to relevant anti-corruption agencies to enable them to swing into action and recover the state’s resources at their disposal.

The chairman of the group, Comrade Duniya was later received behind closed doors by the Deputy governor, Dr. Hadiza Balarabe,  Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Abdulkadir Meyere, Deputy Chief of Staff, Umar Hassan Waziri, Private Personal Secretary (PPS), Professor Bello Ayuba, among others.

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