Nigerian Concord Newspaper
The governor of Benue state, Reverend Father Hyacinth Alia has allegedly cornered the state security votes worth more than N4 Billion in less than six months in office despite the increasing insecurity and killings of innocent people by Fulani herdsmen in the state.
Although, Governor Alia has always maintained that he wants to cut the cost of governance in the state, financial records obtained by our reporter Tuesday morning indicated that the governor has been deducting a whooping N800 million every month from the state Treasury as his security votes.
Despite the huge monthly deductions of N800 million by the governor, findings by this newspaper showed that none of the security agencies in the state has received a quarter of their dues from Governor Alia-led administration in the last five and half months.
Sources at the Government House in Makurdi who pleaded not to be mentioned explained that the governor constitutionally has the rights to his monthly security votes but stressed that his failure to fund security agencies in the state despite the monthly deductions of N800 million is worrisome.
However, Nigerian Concord’s investigation has revealed that Governor Alia has been using the monthly security votes to service his election case in the Judiciary instead of using it to tackle insecurity in the state.
One of Nigerian Concord’s reliable sources within the administration said that there is no way the government can curb fulani killings and the high level of insecurity in the state especially in the Sankera axis due to the failure of the governor to use the N800 monthly security vote judiciously.
“How can the security agencies in the state function very well when there is no provisions for them by the state government. How can they tackle crimes, killings and insecurity in Benue state when the security votes in the state are being used to finance the governor’s election cases in the Judiciary” the source queried.
The source continued: “I am part of the government but it has got to a stage that we must speak out to avert the evils that are coming to befall the state in the hands of Oga (Alia). How can the state progress with the way the governor is managing its resources. There are lots of road contracts that were even inflated but they have not been touched till now despite that the governor had released funds for them. To make matter worse, all the companies he had awarded those abandoned projects belong to his friends and family members and also some where he personally has stakes. How can the state function under such fraud.
“Governor Alia is presiding over a band of frauds in Benue state and the state lawmakers need to checkmate him before he lands the state into bankruptcy. He has been dipping his hands into the Treasury of the Benue state government as he wishes. We are aware that he unfreezes the state government bank accounts and take any money running to hundreds of millions of Naira each time he needs money for his personal use and orders that the bank accounts be frozen immediately he gets what he wants.
“Look at the issue of insecurity in the state. Is the governor doing the right thing by treating the killers (Fulani herdsmen) with kids gloves. This alone has confirmed that he truly had a pact with the Miyetti Allah Association during his electioneering. That may also be the reason he is not funding the security agencies in the state with the statutory security votes.
“Is there a day these bandits don’t kill innocent people in Benue state. The state lawmakers should prove it for once that they are not a rubber stamp of Governor Alia by challenging him on the issue of insecurity in the state”
All attempts to reach the governor’s spokesperson, Kula Tersoo on his mobile line 07013743444 through calls and text messages proved futile as he was not responding up till the time of filing this report.