The Kebbi State Peoples Redemption Party has observed with keen interests the current efforts by the Kebbi State House of Assembly to take up its rightful place by exercising its functions as enshrined in the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (As Amended).
The House, after its long slumber, should be commended for finding its voice to now speak out on the happenings in the state. This is expected to go a long way in strengthening democracy and good governance by checking the current authoritarian rule that has pervaded the state.
We in the Kebbi PRP are, however urging the House to do more by going beyond the current press releases to ensure that the state is returned to its glorious past where prudence, accountability and transparency hold sway and where as a result of these enviable qualities, the state witnessed tremendous achievements in various sectors that include health, education, agriculture, commerce, infrastructures and services.
However, it is important to point out that from 2015 to date, the state has continued to slide downwards amongst its peers in terms of growth and development in different sectors.
This has been attributed to the state government’s financial recklessness, nepotism and being impervious to any constructive criticism and advice. This formed the basis of the Kebbi PRP’s Press Briefing that took place on January 24, 2020 where several issues were highlighted by the Party that urgently required government attention and redress.
The issues raised by the Party at the Press Briefing are still germane and are also still begging for attention from government. With the current sincerity exuded by the House, we in the Kebbi PRP believe that these issues should receive attention of the House and consequently they have been succinctly reproduced as follows:
i.Demanded for Removal of governor’s cohorts and family from undue negative influence in the running of government affairs in the state by allowing democracy and rule of law to thrive.
ii.Demanded the Publication of the list of beneficiaries of the N17 billion Anchor Borrowers Programme and set-up a Committee to investigate the full implementation of the programme in the state. We consider the purported arraignment of 70,000 beneficiaries by AFAN and the government as a hoax.
iii.Requested government to follow civil, legal and responsible ways to tackle cases of persons that have supposedly offended the government but should not resort to taking laws into its hands.
iv. Requested explanation from the government on the expenses made from over N400 billion it received as income between 2015 and 2019 in view of poor level development witnessed in the state.
v. Requested the government to sincerely address the infrastructural deficit in the state especially providing proper physical planning and urban renewal of Birnin Kebbi; the state capital.
vi. Commended the state government on the security situation of the state but pointed out the need for beefing up security in some parts of the state’s border with Zamfara state where some villages have been sacked by the bandits.
vii. Requested the government to redress the declined productivity in the public service by embarking on appointment based on merit as well as prompt payment of gratuity anddeath benefit to beneficiaries and next of kin.
We wish to specifically note the House’s efforts towards addressing the plight of the civil service in the state in terms of nonchalant attitude of government in the payment of gratuity and death benefits, the non-constitution of Boards, the unseriousness exhibited by government in establishing measures to contain COVID-19 in the state and the non-availability of fertilisers for the 2020 farming season, and extend our support on addressing these and other pertinent issues that affect the growth and development of the state. However, we wish to unambiguously state that, as stakeholders, we shall not shirk our responsibility in tracking and commenting on the efforts of the House on how ultimately these issues raised were addressed in favour of the masses of the state.
Finally, we want to appeal to all our Muslim brothers and sisters to demonstrate high spirit of brotherhood in this holy month of Ramadan by caring for one another in the face of government’s inability to take any palliative measure to cushion the effect of the partial lockdown in the state. We also appeal to everyone to adhere to all measures put in place by relevant religious bodies and health authorities to help in curbing the spread of COVID-19 virus.
State Publicity Secretary
Monday, 27th April, 2020