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Wike laments financial rot in Rivers’ LGs

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Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike has lamented that despite receiving between N2 billion and N5 billion yearly from the Federation Account, some local councils in the state have no project to show for the funds.

Wike, who described the report of the committee he set up to investigate and audit the financial transactions of the 23 local councils in the state as scandalous, said that the state government would follow the due process of the law in implementing it since the Supreme Court had ruled that state governors could not dissolve elected councils.

“We will obey the Supreme Court judgment on that matter. But we shall take action on the areas where we are empowered by the law to act. All the treasurers, head personnel management and other civil servants involved in illegal financial transactions will be sanctioned.

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“I have read the preliminary report. It is bad. The report is scandalous. Tomorrow, they will say that I don’t remember those who fought for me. Did you fight for me so that you can destroy the system?

“As a local council chairman, I created a record as a performer. I did projects and worked for our people. I won all the awards. If I had asked them to bring money, I would not have set up the committee. They would have indicted me. Some local councils take up to N2 billion yearly and there is a council that gets up to N5 billion yearly, yet no project,” he said.

According to him, the findings of the committee were not political but an attempt to ensure that the right things are done.

The governor declared that he was not out to witch-hunt anyone but committed to the development of Rivers State and the entrenchment of due process.

The Deputy Governor, Ipalibo Banigo, said that the committee ensured professionalism in the investigation by engaging three auditing firms.

She advised the council chairmen to see the exercise as a wake-up call to work for their people.


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