Wednesday, July 27

Ex-commissioner, Edo govt disagree over N14.5bn website

Ex-commissioner, Edo govt disagree over N14.5bn website

The Edo State Government has denied spending a sum of N14bn to design a website for its Open Portal project.

It also dismissed the allegation by a former Commissioner for Transport, Orobosa Omo-Ojo, that Governor Adams Oshiomhole spent the sum of N500m to fund his vice presidential ambition in the build-up to the 2015 presidential election.

He had alleged that the open portal project was a deception to justify the $225m World Bank loan, adding that it would be unjust to Edo people if the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission failed to investigate the project.

The former commissioner had described Oshiomhole administration as a “mob government where everyone contributes to the affairs of the state without a clear direction of government policy.”

Omo-Ojo had said, “The whole bullshit about open portal was arrant deception designed as a cover-up for the growing criticisms of lack of transparency in government operations and a means to justify the $225m World Bank loan, which is about N50bn.

“The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission must investigate the ‘Open Portal’ contract for the benefit of the Edo people. It is outrageous that a mere website design will gulp over N14bn in a state where hundreds of roads are begging for government attention.”

But the Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Kassim Afegbua, in a statement, said, ”There are several other allegations he made in the said book which we will require him to prove beyond reasonable doubt.

“On the alleged N14bn expended on the Edo State website and open portal, nothing speaks of the mental delusion of this ex-commissioner than this. How can any reasonable person with mental alertness make such a bogus allegation?

“Does that not sound like dubious tales from the moonlight? We are not only proud of our trail-blazing initiative, with respect to e-governance; we are satisfied with the achievements we have recorded in that sector to promote transparency, accountability and probity in governance.”

Afegbua also said that the state government would not be deterred by publications aimed at discrediting its achievements ahead of the governorship election.

The statement read in part, “It is only a dubious party like the Peoples Democratic Party and its bunch of economic predators that parade such ‘ingenuity’ to plunder state resources without a whimper.”

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