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Director alleges fraud in running of Nigerian Governors Forum, demands forensic audit

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The Director of Media and Public Affairs at the Nigerian Governor’s Forum (NGF), Abdulrazaque Bello-Barkindo, has submitted a letter to the NGF chairman and Kwara State Governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRasaq, alleging corruption and a lack of transparency in the organization’s management. The leaked communication has brought to light internal conflicts within the NGF Secretariat in Abuja, with high-ranking officials in dispute over purported financial misconduct and recklessness.

Barkindo unveiled concerns about the operational practices of the secretariat, contending that the NGF now prioritizes transactions over development. He asserted that the NGF has deviated from being an agent of change to becoming “a conduit pipe for a few individuals.” He called for a comprehensive forensic audit of all NGF accounts, including those established during crisis periods, to prevent scrutiny by governors under the guise of entities like NIGOFO.

The letter emphasized that the NGF accounts have not undergone auditing for at least a decade, highlighting the transformation of the Forum and its finances into the personal domain of a select few. Barkindo expressed dissatisfaction with the lack of qualified accountants in an organization involved in substantial financial transactions, such as the Paris-London refunds. He disclosed instances where significant amounts, such as the N630 million deducted from the N5 billion infrastructure support fund, were allegedly maneuvered to create conflicts among governors.

Barkindo suggested that the NGF undergo a forensic audit to scrutinize all its accounts, especially those established during crisis periods, to prevent interference by governors through entities like NIGOFO.

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BREAKING: Oronsaye Report: Tinubu to scrap many agencies, merge others

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President Bola Tinubu will implement some of the recommendations contained in the Oronsaye Report.

This is majorly, in order to cut the cost of governance.

This is coming 12 years after the Steve Oronsaye Panel submitted its report on restructuring and rationalising Federal government parastatals and agencies and a white paper issued two years after.

According to Bayo Onanuga, the President and the Federal Executive Council on Monday reached a decision to implement the report.

He said: “Many agencies will be scrapped and many others will be merged, to pave the way to a leaner government.”

CREDIT: DAILY POST

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‘You’re responsible for Nigeria’s economic woes’— Atiku tackles Tinubu

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Atiku Abubakar, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate in the 2023 general election, attributed Nigeria’s economic challenges to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

In a statement shared on his official social media account on Sunday, the former Vice President of Nigeria urged Tinubu to take cues from Argentina’s President Javier Milei on swiftly restoring investor confidence despite inheriting a troubled economy.

Atiku criticized Tinubu for deflecting blame onto the opposition and his predecessors, calling such actions unnecessary and shortsighted. He emphasized that market dynamics respond to concrete actions, not political rhetoric.

Drawing parallels with President Milei’s leadership in Argentina, Atiku highlighted the need for well-sequenced economic reforms. He commended Milei’s proactive approach in preparing for the post-reform challenges and ensuring the availability of mitigating measures.

Atiku contrasted Tinubu’s administration’s ad hoc and hurried reforms with Milei’s strategic sequencing. He pointed out Argentina’s lean government structure achieved through reducing ministries and privatizing state-owned enterprises, contrasting it with Nigeria’s expanding bureaucracy and excessive spending on official residences.

Atiku likened Tinubu’s administration’s approach to Nero fiddling while Rome burns, accusing him of evading substantive action and blaming the opposition for policy failures, reminiscent of characters in George Orwell’s Animal Farm.

Expressing admiration for Argentina’s reforms, Atiku suggested aligning his “Recover Nigeria Plan” with Milei’s stabilization strategy to alleviate Nigeria’s economic distress. He emphasized the need for transparent policies focused on economic revival and warned against dismissing discontent, particularly among the youth, which could manifest in protests.

The statement referred to the worsening economic conditions in Nigeria, highlighted by soaring inflation rates and high living costs, as reported by the National Bureau of Statistics, with headline inflation reaching 29.90% and food inflation at 35.42% in January 2024.

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BREAKING: Fire guts FCT Minister’s residence

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A fire broke out at the private residence of Dr. Mariya Mahmoud, the Minister of State in the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), on Sunday afternoon.

Situated at No. 9, Justice Roseline Ukeji Close in the affluent Asokoro district of Abuja, the property was reportedly completely destroyed by the blaze.

Despite prompt emergency response efforts, including the arrival of fire service personnel, nothing could be salvaged from the premises.

Mr. Austin Elemue, the Minister’s Special Adviser on Media, confirmed the incident, indicating that the cause of the fire remained unknown at the time.

Authorities have initiated an investigation to ascertain the cause of the fire.

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