Protesters Storm Kaduna Govt House Over El-Rufai's N423b Indictment, Urged Gov. Sani to Invite EFCC
By Lola Seriki-Idahosa, Kaduna
Tracereporters –Protesters in large number, under the auspices of Kaduna Citizens Watch for Good Governance (KCWGG) on Thursday stormed Kaduna government House, asking  Governor Uba Sani to invite officials of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and other relevant security agencies to arrest and prosecute the immediate past governor of the State, Nasil El-rufai over indictment of N423 billion.
The protesters who began trekking at about 11a.m from UTC  Bus stop that leads to the government House, sang solidarity song for governor Uba Sani, just as they displayed several placards with different inscriptions, condemning financial mismanagement, abuse of power, and a growing debt burden for the past eight years by El-rufai administration.
Some of the inscriptions read, “We will occupy all MDAs to chase out all indicted persons in the report. “Stop servicing all loans that did not follow due process before they were obtained. “Jimi Lawal almost killed Kaduna State the way he killed a bank some years ago”. “EFCC, ICPC, investigate Zenith for aiding corruption in Kaduna State”, “Jimi Lawal is a professional money launderer”, Kaduna is bleeding, recover all our stolen assets”.
On March 30th, 2024, Governor Uba Sani revealed during a town hall meeting that the state faced a substantial debt burden of $587 million, N85 billion, and 115 contractual liabilities inherited from the previous administration. This has led to over 70% of the state’s allocation being used to service the inherited debt.
In response, the Kaduna State House of Assembly formed an ad-hoc committee to investigate the state’s financial transactions from May 29th, 2015 to May 29th, 2023. The committee, led by Barrister Henry Danjuma Magaji, submitted its findings on June 5th, 2024, revealing significant unaccounted funds and irregularities in financial transactions. The report highlighted mismanagement of funds, diversion of loans, overpayment of contractors, and lack of transparency in the usage of state funds.
While addressing Journalists shortly after arriving Kaduna government House, Chairman of the protesting group, Comrade Victor Duniya said, “We, the Kaduna citizens watch for good governance , appreciate your presence as we express our grievances today. Our state has endured financial mismanagement, abuse of power, and a growing debt burden for the past eight years.
“The most troubling finding was the diversion of 10.5 billion naira meant for pastoral nomadism and the construction of the Milk Industry at Damau, Kubau LGA, for the construction of Galaxy Mall, Kaduna. Additionally, the report uncovered overpayments to contractors, payments to unregistered companies, and funds disbursed for work not completed, amounting to over 36.3 billion.
“The report also revealed large sums of money withdrawn from the state treasury without proper documentation of its usage. Furthermore, an expenditure of over 11 billion on a non-existent MRT transportation scheme was documented with no evidence to support it.
“While we were struggling to come to terms with the voodoo former Governor El-Rufai and his cabinet members deployed to cover the faces of Kaduna people from seeing all these atrocities, El-Rufai in his characteristically lousy manner, gathered members of his well-fed family to Sallah feast where he tacitly called on them in Hausa Language to bring down the government of Senator Uba Sani, which we believe it is as a result of the sin of allowing the legislative arm of government to work for the first time in over 8 years.
“As concerned citizens, we condemn in the strongest terms possible the outright and merciless looting of our state, which has widened the poverty gap in the state by the immediate past administration.
“We commend Governor Uba Sani for holding on to the ideals of the democracy he worked for by not interfering in the activities of the Kaduna State House, as many people expected you to stop the legislative arm of government from doing their work, as it was done in the past.
“We commend Governor Uba Sani for running an open government, where regular consultations are carried out with various stakeholders, especially during town hall meetings.
“We commend the Kaduna State House of Assembly for the thorough work done in unravelling the financial atrocities committed against our state, despite blackmails and threat from the beneficiaries of the financial heist.
“We call on Governor Uba Sani to implement relevant sections of the report that fall under his purview.
“We call on the Governor to officially forward the findings of the committee report to relevant anti-corruption agencies to enable them to swing into action and recover our resources at their disposal.
“We assure you of our maximum support, as we are aware that those who ought to be behind bars for looting our state now have the effrontery to dish out threats to the people-centered leadership of our dear state.
“We call on Security Agencies to immediately arrest and prosecute former governor Nasir El-Rufai and those he has incited  to bring down the government of Senator Uba Sani.
“We appreciate your peaceful presence in our endeavor to bring positive change to our beloved state, despite the challenging weather conditions”.
The chairman of the group, Comrade Duniya was later received on behalf of the protesters by the Deputy governor, Hajiya Hadiza Balarabe,  Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Abdulkadir Meyere, Deputy Chief of Staff, Umar Hassan Waziri, Private Personal Secretary (PPS), Professor Bello Ayuba, among others.
The government officials appreciated the group’s peaceful protest, and assured them that their message would be forwarded to the governor who was unavoidable absent at the time the protesters arrived government House.

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