KABBA – The Kabba-Bunu Local Government Council of Kogi State has disbursed N107.7 million Subsidy Re-investment Programme (SURE-P) intervention funds for the execution of 20 rural development projects in the area.
The Chairman of the council, Mr Emmanuel Funsho, made the disclosure on Sunday while addressing members of the state council of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) who were on assessment tour of SURE-P projects in the area.
Represented by Mr Sam Obanibi, the Vice Chairman of the council, Funsho said the 20 projects in education, water, transport and health sectors, adding that the council had been transparent in the use of SURE-P funds intervention.
He commended the NUJ team for the concern over utilisation of public funds and delivery of democracy dividends to the people.
He said “if there are no checks and balances, many local government councils might decide not to account for the funds allocated to them.’’
Earlier, the NUJ Chairman, Mr Ali Atabor, who led the team, had urged council chairmen in the country to ensure transparency, honesty and fear of God in utilising public funds.
He expressed concern over the shoddy execution of jobs in some areas, saying he was disappointed with the renovation of classrooms at St. Mary’s Primary School, Kabba, and a non-functional borehole at Owode.
Also at Iluke-Bunu, where the local government council claimed to have renovated a secondary school’s science laboratory with N2.65 million, the NUJ chairman regretted that only the walls and windows of the one-classroom block were painted.
He lamented that the over N6 million contract for construction of three-classroom blocks at Okebukun-Bunu had remained at foundation level, with 60 per cent of the contract sum already paid.
Atabor also flayed the evacuation and rehabilitation of roads and drains by the council at several millions of naira as they hardly meet required standard.
He reminded the councils that the SURE-P funds were meant to address infrastructural challenges in rural areas.
“We are not on police mission but to ensure accountability and transparency in utilisation of SURE-P funds. You must be sincere, transparent and have the fear of God,” he stressed. (NAN)