Delta: Okowa, Igbuya, Makinde, Others Indicted in Alleged Budget Padding Scandal
LAGOS SEPTEMBER 30TH (URHOBOTODAY)-Delta State Governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, Speaker, Delta State House of Assembly, Hon Monday Igbuya and Managing Director of Delta State Oil Producing Area Development Commission (DESOPADEC), Mr Williams Makinde and other top Delta State government functionaries were alleged to have hijacked and diverted multi-billion naira contracts to their private companies among other corrupt and fraudulent practices executed in DESOPADEC’s N28 billion controversial budget.
Thus, the alleged padding of the 2016 Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission, (DESOPADEC) budget by the speaker of the state House of Assembly, Monday Igbuya, in connivance with Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, Makinde and other lawmakers is presently generating crisis in Delta state.
Investigation revealed that the alleged colossal scam came to limelight two weeks ago when the controversial budget was leaked to the public. A top director in the commission from one of the marginalized ethnic group disclosed that the budget padding crisis could escalate into a bloody ethnic crisis if not resolved soon.
He said what he saw in the yet to be signed budget is more than the padding crisis consuming the House of Representatives. The director said Okowa is offended by the leakage of the budget and has refused to sign the budget.
“He is not happy with the speaker and others the way and manner the document was leaked. You will weep for Delta State if you see how these people are trading with our State,” he said.
“Come and see how Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, Speaker of Delta State House of Assembly, Mr. Monday Igbuya, Chairman, Delta State House of Assembly Committee on DESOPADEC and member representing Warri South Constituency II in the House, Mr. Dennis Omovie, and former Governor James Ibori’s daughter who is the Chairwoman, House Committee on Finance and Appropriation, Erhiatake Ibori, corruptly and fraudulently padded the budget for their personal interests and and to the detriment of others.
“Unlike in previous budgets which never exceeded 13% of the entire budget of the commission, the 2016 DESOPADEC budget allocated 37% of its proposed expenditure. The real concept behind the creation of the commission is no more. “
He decried a situation where the governor using his principal secretary, Mr. Hilary Ibegbulem, to grab billions of naira contracts to cronies and frontiers. A situation where the speaker, Mr. Monday Igbuya, will be grabbing mouth-watering contracts to his company, as well as the likes of other lawmakers, Mr. Michael Diden, Mrs. Omawunmi Udoh, Mr. Dennis Omovie and Ibori’s daughter, Erhiatake Ibori, each grabbing mouth-watering contracts, indicates that Delta state is finished.
The director alleged that also in the budget, through the DESOPADEC MD, Mr. Makinde, a whopping sum of N350 million was allocated to James Ibori, private university, Western Delta University (WDU) at Oghara outside the quarterly N350 million being pumped into Ibori’s Independent Newspapers.
He said the executive director, finance and administration, Mr. Ogieh, in connivance with the MD, has almost a whopping N1 billion to buy Hilux and other vehicles for personal use.