prince-auduThere is uneasy calm in the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, following the refusal of most its 23 governors to donate N100 million each to the N2.3 billion imposed on them by the national leadership of the party for the Kogi State governorship election.
Nigerian Pilot Sunday gathered that the APC governors had earlier sent signals to the national leadership of the party that they are having financial crisis in their states and cannot afford to fritter away such amount.
Some of the governors were said to have expressed reservations that the donation to prosecute the Kogi election will be a waste as the party’s governorship candidate, Prince Abubakar Audu, is a hard sell.
The governors maintained that most of them owe backlog of salaries and cannot afford to use the bail out from the federal government to fund the Kogi election.
The decision of the governors not to honour the mandatory levy is said to have unsettled the national leadership of the party.
As the October deadline for the payment of the levy draws close, the national chairman of the party is said to have adopted subtle diplomacy to approach the governors individually to persuade them to pay up.
As the APC governors continue to resist pressure on them to contribute to the N2.3 billion campaign funds, the Lagos state government has taken up the task of raising money for the prosecution of the Kogi governorship election.
The running mate to Prince Audu, and a member of the House of Representative (Ikeja Federal Constituency), Hon. James Abiodun Faleke, is an indigene of Kwara state but plies his trade in Lagos. He was also a two-term chairman of Ojodu council in Lagos and political godson of former Lagos state governor, Alhaji Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
In a bid to raise a minimum of one billion naira (N1bn) for the Kogi election, the Lagos state governor has levied the 20 local government councils in the state N50 million each.
However, the council officials were not comfortable with the directive to pay N50 miilion and they discreetly whispered the development to some civil society organisations who have not taken up the campaign to stop the deduction from Lagos council accounts.
The decision to forcefully task the twenty local government Areas to contribute the sum of N1billion came under attack at separate press conferences addressed by Tunde Babarinsa, Chairman Coalition of Civil Societies, Lagos State and Alabi Oyewole, Representatives of well meaning Lagosians.
The groups at the press conferences, held in Lagos lamented the over bearing burden placed on the local councils over an election that does not have bearing with the state.
The contribution according to Babarinsa is on and to be completed before October 31.
Alleging that poaching resources from the Lagos treasury to fund election in other states had become a merchandise for the merchants of political trade who double as the end beneficiaries of the spoils from the tolls from other lands, they called on the EFCC and other anti graft agencies to beam their searchlight on the finances of Lagos State, with the view to protecting the people’s commonwealth.
He subsequently called on the relevant authorities to stop the APC from milking Lagos dry.

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