The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, has accused Bauchi state Governor Mohammed Abubakar of diverting N400bn from the state purse in his three years in power.
This was contained in a statement released by the Special Adviser on Media and Public Affairs to Speaker, Turaki Hassan, on Saturday.
Speaking at a Peoples Democratic Party campaign rally in the state, which doubled as his official defection from the All Progressives Congress, the Speaker showed documents of ghost workers and other fraud machineries of the governor.
The statement read, “the Speaker challenged Abubakar to take him to court and promised that he would defend the allegations and added that as a lawyer he knew the law and would not level false allegations against anyone without having evidence.
“One of the documents indicates that no fewer than 1,200 people were said to have been employed and added into the state’s payroll beginning from July 2015.”
He added, “However, one of the ghost employees by name, Bappale Adamu, was said to have been born in 1899, which is 120 years ago and started work with the state government on July 24, 2015 and will retire from the service in 2023.”
According to the statement, the 1,200 workers, although having different names and dates of birth, had the same Bank Verification Number, meaning that their salaries were being paid into the same bank account.
Dogara claimed that the salaries varied from N39,000 to N86,000.
“The speaker also wondered how Bauchi State’s monthly salary skyrocketed from N2.6bn per month in May 2015 to N7bn without recruiting additional workers, especially as the governor early in his administration, fired the political appointees nade by his predecessor Isa Yuguda, which should have reduced the state’s wage bill drastically,” the statement added.
However, the Press Secretary to the governor, Abubabakar Al-Sadique, swiftly denied the allegations.
He said Dogara “is suffering from election fever and should concentrate on convincing his constituents to vote for him.”
“Dogara’s allegations that the governor has diverted N400bn is laughable. Dogara is suffering from election fever. When you allege that somebody has diverted N400bn in about 43 months, invariably, you are saying that the individual has diverted about N9bn each month. Where did N9bn come into the Bauchi State Government’s coffers?” He added.
He noted that the state gets between N4bn or N5bn as allocation each month.