- ’Gov’s N165bn projects are white lies’
- No, they are real, Govt insists
…as ‘prayer warriors’ swindle Delta PDP chieftain
A pressure group, Watching Eyes, has issued a statement alleging that the 148 road projects that the Delta State Government claimed to be executing at a cost of N165bn are actually non-existent, alleging that the people are being fleeced to create funds for the governor’s 2019 second term ‘project.’
The group, in a statement jointly signed by its President, Mr. Paul Awanmaka, and Secretary, Mr. Godwin Oboh, faulted a recent claim by the state’s Commissioner for Works, Chief James Auguoye, that N150bn had so far been spent on road projects whereas the state government had earlier put the figure at N165bn, saying the double-speak demands probe.
The group said it deliberately emerged as “Watching Eyes” ahead of the 2019 election, saying it was poised to continually assess and monitor political, economic and infrastructural developments of Delta State, insisting that its assessment so far had shown that the state government lied on its claim to be constructing or rehabilitating roads that numbered 148.
The Watching Eyes flayed the governor’s alleged “abrasive, ethnic politics”, and condemned what it described as “media propaganda” to hoodwink Deltans.
‘WHERE ARE OKOWA’S 148 ROAD PROJECTS?’
Part of the Watching Eyes’ statement read: “We have found Governor Okowa’s agenda weak, and as one laced with maladministration and media propaganda. Where are the roads the government claimed to have spent N165 billion or N150 billion on? The amount is even conflicting; it is total fraud – the so-called 148 roads. And we will follow it all to the letter.”
“The 148 roads claimed to have been constructed or rehabilitated by the state government for two years in office, were fables, a ruse and political hoodwinking statements.”
The group, which disassociated itself from any political party, averred that it only emerged to ensure “total eradication of fraud in the state”, adding, “This group is just a pressure group, not for any political party; it will monitor activities in the state, and ensure Deltans benefit from the dividends of democracy and not fraudsters looting the state’s treasury.”
The group lamented that since the Okowa administration came on board in the state, there had been “nothing to show for all its efforts.”
Where are the roads the government claimed to have spent N165 billion or N150 billion on? The amount is even conflicting; it is total fraud
‘THE GROUP IS FACELESS’
But in a swift reaction, the Chief Press Secretary to the state governor, Mr. Charles Aniagwu, described the group as faceless, and one being used to score political points.
He said that the provision of basic infrastructure by Governor Okowa had been evident in the last two years and half months, adding that “the group’s quarrel with Okowa’s true leadership, glaringly lacks roots with the people as it is purely made up of sponsored and faceless people.”
The governor’s media spokesman said he would only respond to the group’s allegations if its principal officers could be identified.
‘REAL COST OF ROAD PROJECTS’LL BE RELEASED’
Recently, Auguoye, the Works Commissioner, had, during an inspection of road projects in the state, told journalists that the dualisation of link roads being carried out was for a conducive environment and the socio-economic growth in the state, adding that the ongoing 4.27km Owa-Eke/Owa-Alero dualisation road/drainage system project in Ika North East Local Government area of the state, would be completed soon.
He said that two road projects in Oghara were near completion as the state government had concluded plans to address the major challenges facing the completion of the township road, adding that 1.8km portion of the 3.7km Oghara Teaching Hospital link road project had been executed.
He inspected other roads under construction such as 1.7km Ugbeiyi road project; 2.4km Kpokogri/Okuvo road project awarded in November 9, 2015, and 12.5km reconstruction of old Aghalokpe/Arhagba/Ovwori/Adavware/Amukpe road project.
The commissioner, who declined to speak on the N150billion and N165billion alleged double-speak in the costs of the road projects, said at the appropriate time, the right figure would be released.
He charged road users, especially heavy-duty truck drivers, to be cautious, and avoid destroying the road.
According to him, the 4.1km seven road/drain projects spread across Ethiope East, Sapele Okpe was part of Okowa’s policy to spread the dividends of democracy across the state.
The group’s quarrel with Okowa’s true leadership, glaringly lacks roots with the people as it is purely made up of sponsored and faceless people
…‘PRAYER WARRIORS’ SWINDLE PDP CHIEFTAIN
Meanwhile, a Peoples Democratic Party chieftain in Asaba (names withheld) has allegedly been swindled by some ‘prayer warriors’ to the tune of N1.3million.
It was gathered that the politician had sought the help of these ‘prayer warriors’ who claimed to be Indian-trained prayer warriors, and had been operating in Asaba in the past six months, ahead of 2019 elections.
The politician, it was learnt, is aspiring to represent a constituency in Delta Central Senatorial District at the state’s House of Assembly.
The fleeced politician, who spoke to our correspondent on the condition of anonymity, said, “Some persons told me the prayer warriors are good, and I consulted them; they gave me perfume to always spray at night and each night that I sprayed the perfume, I don’t sleep well.
“I parted with N1.3million, and when I went to somewhere in Asaba where they were operating from at the time appointed for me to come, they had packed out of the house and I was as in a dream; a bad ordeal indeed,” the politician lamented.