From Mohammed Adamu, Kaduna with agency report
A former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Malam Nasir el-Rufa’i yesterday alleged that the Kaduna state government had received over N600 bn from the Federation Account in the last seven years with nothing to show in the state for the huge allocations.
El-Rufa’i, who is also vying for the governorship seat in the state on the platform of the All Progressive Congress (APC), made the allegation as guest of Freedom Radio Hausa programme, Barka da Warhaka, and also said the state was the second most indebted state in Nigeria.
He, however, added that though Lagos state was more indebted than Kaduna State, former nation’s capital had the capacity to pay, arguing that Kaduna state received the second highest statutory allocation from the Federation Account in the North after Kano, “but has nothing to show for it”.
El-Rufa’i said, “Although, Lagos state is more indebted than Kaduna state, but it (Lagos) has the capacity to pay. Governor Babatunde Fashola generates about N20 bn monthly internally, but Kaduna state does not get N1 bn from Internally Generated Revenue.”
He noted that his criticisms were not borne out of partisanship, because, according to him, other PDP states like Gombe and Katsina states are executing laudable projects. “Why should our own PDP government in Kaduna state be different? he queried.
The ex-minister faulted the state government’s claim that it used most of the money that accrued to it in the last seven years to service debts, as the government was still indebted to contractors to the tune of N30bn.
He added that there was reason behind the state being the second most indebted state after Lagos, since the Ahmed Makarfi-led administration had liquidated all debts in 2006 before leaving office in 2007.
El-Rufa’i recalled that by 2005, the country had exited external debts during the ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo’s administration, saying what remained were debts between states and the Federal Government.
“By 2006, the Makarfi administration had paid-off all its domestic debts. This fact can be verified from the website of the Debt Management Office,” he stated.