Another Politician Accuses Uduaghan Of Stealing State Funds


ASABA, DELTA, May 22, (THEWILL) - Delta state 2007 Governorship Candidate, People’s Redemption Party, (PRP), Comrade Igbini Odafe Emmanuel has accused Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan and the state Commissioner of Information, Mr. Oma Djebah of hiding under the ineffectiveness of the state owned gloried media houses to continue to steal state funds to the detriment of Deltans.

Comrade Igbini also lambasted the state government of losing focus in revamping the three glorified owned media houses which are in state of comatose despite several billions of naira voted annually.

The State Deputy Governor, Prof. Amos Utuama (SAN) who is, chairman, Committee on the Third Anniversary of the Administration of Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, in a press briefing, Thursday, at the Press Center, Government House, Asaba, had told Journalists that the state Broadcasting station (DBS), Asaba, despite huge sums of money expended on it, has vehemently refused to respond to treatment which has given government a serious concern.

According to the Deputy Governor "Government is poised to reposition the TV station and this year’s budget the sum of N1.6 billion has been approved to reinvigorate the TV station, DBS and another N150 million for the Pointer Newspaper" promising that the government intends to put DBS on satellite very soon."

But reacting to what he termed as a convenient conduct pipe for Governor Uduaghan’s government to continue to steal state funds, Comrade Igbini noted that his attention was drawn to a news item posted on the Delta State official website on May 21, 2011 titled: Delta Earmarks N1.6bn to Revitalize Media Houses. "I am reluctant but compelled to react to this news to ensure the facts are known to Deltans and for Government to manage the resources of our people in transparent and accountable manner.

"I must state here that this new proposal amounts to nothing but continued and unrepentant determination by this government to out rightly steal the scare revenue accruing to Delta State. The relevant anti-corruption agencies of Nigeria must immediately move in to investigate some very pertinent questions."

Igbini wondered what the whooping N1 billion proposed by the state government and presented to the state House of Assembly by Mr. Oma Djebah during his 2008 Budget Defence for revamping the state Media Houses (the Pointer, DBS and Journalism school) was used for.

He noted that the Commissioner had told the House Committee on Information that the state has proposed N1b in the 2008 Fiscal year for repositioning the state Media Houses which he (Djebah) informed the House Committee that it would cost the Delta State government N300m to sustain the so-called newly re-branded Pointer Newspapers which the government launched in Lagos in 2008.

"He also informed the Committee that contracts amounting to N1billion were awarded by his Ministry in the year 2007 out of which N426 million had been paid. What were the works carried out by the contractors for which the millions were paid"?

In retrospect, Comrade Igbini disclosed that the governor and commissioner have on various fora and media interviews granted on the state owned media informed Deltans that they have approved huge sums of money for the purchase of modern Digital Broadcast equipment for the same media houses.

"We were also told that some time last year that some senior engineers of Delta State Broadcasting Stations, Warri and Asaba were sponsored along with the contractor and some officials of the Delta State Ministry of Information to some Countries abroad allegedly for the purpose of purchasing this modern digital equipment. They have since returned. Where are the digital equipments expectedly purchased? What is the true state of the state government media houses today?

"Today, DBS Asaba and Warri are in a state of comatose, dubbing and relaying News programmes of NTA, Channels TV, CNN, AIT, etc for transmission to Deltans and in return make money from Advert sponsors. Today, DRTV Warri shows only Home Movies every morning on weekdays, Religious programmes every hour of the day, Obituaries and PDP government propaganda and lies to the extent that Deltans are now forced to subscribe to Satellite TV Stations for very vital National and International Information and News needed for peace, security and unity.

"For this reason, millions of Deltans and Nigerians residing in Delta State today are the highest subscribers to Satellites TV Stations in Africa costing them million of naira monthly. This so-called unending revamping of Delta State Media Houses Project has become a convenient conduct pipe for this government to continue to steal our State funds".

It would be recalled that as a way of putting a stop to this ugly trend, Comrade Igbini instituted a legal action against the government since February 2009 before a Delta State High Court, Effurun, Presided by Hon. Justice Mrs. Akperi, but according Igbini, the "State Government has continued to employ provocative delay tactics to obstruct justice to the extent that the Court has not commenced hearing in the substantive matter as to whether the State government was right to establish and appoint two separate Boards for Delta State Broadcasting Stations, Asaba and Warri contrary to the Delta State Law 2000 which provides only for one Board of a Chairman and six members for both Stations."