Nigerian Concord Newspaper
…Spent N2.3 billion on Refurbished Buses for Palliatives
Between May 29 and September 30th, 2023, Governor Hyacinth Alia of Benue State has spent more than N46 billion of state resources on various purposes, prominent among which are expenses for his travels, vehicles, hotel bills, cost of running Government House etc.
Nigerian Concord investigation reveals that Governor Alia has spent about N3 billion on his vehicles and those of other government officials including State Assembly members.
Government records as reliably obtained by us showed that on the 5th of September 2023, the Alia government spent N2,040,780,000.00 for the procurement of vehicles for the Governor, his Deputy, Assembly Members and other government officials in the state.
Again on the 28th September, 2023, Governor Alia released additional N504,175,000.00 for the same procurement of official vehicles for himself, his appointees and Assembly members.
The company that handled the vehicles procurement contract was MBS Investments and Properties.
The same day, 28th September, 2023, the Alia government released N2,236,000,000.00 to Lajec Engineering Services Ltd for the procurement of refurbished Hummer buses for palliative measures and some used Toyota Hilux 2018/2019 model vehicles.
Our investigation further showed that the Hummer buses were converted from right hand drive to left hand drive.
Our fact check however shows that the current market prices of the used Hummer buses are only N10 million per unit.
The records showed that on 6th October, 2023, the state government awarded M/s Triacta Nigeria Limited the sum of N2,760,018,000.00 for the construction/rehabilitation of 16 roads within Makurdi metropolis (15.39km) (contract No. BSPPC-47/2023).
A tour of the Benue State capital however indicated that work is not progressing on any of the road projects.
On 15th August, 2023, Governor Alia spent N65,000,000.00 for the replacement of 500kva JMG generator at the Main Power House, Government House, Makurdi.
The same day, the government claimed that it spent N43,500,000.00 for the purchase, transportation and installation of 2.5MVA 33/0.14 distribution transformer in Government House, Makurdi.
Interestingly, the records showed that on the 7th September, 2023 the government spent N98,032,900.00 for the procurement and installation of 2500kva power transformer/ring main unit at Government House, Makurdi.
At the same time, the government said it had spent N9.7 million to recharge prepaid electricity meters in Government House for September and October, 2023.
The government of Rev Fr. Alia also claimed that it spent the following amounts for the running of Government House Makurdi: 4th July 23, spent N63,508,333.00 on overhead and other unclear expenses.
27th Jul 23, spent N63,508,333.00 for overhead cost and other expenses. Spent same amount of N63,508,333.00 for August and September, 2023.
Between 14th August and 4th September, the Governor said he spent N60 million on provision of food for his guests at Government House, Makurdi.
Within the four months under review, Governor Alia spent over N5 billion on his travels and other expenses, most of which are personal to his office as the governor.