By Simon Ebegbulem
BENIN – Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Edo State, yesterday, called on Governor Adams Oshiomhole to explain how he expended over N12 billion security votes in the past three years.
The state chairman of the party, Chief Dan Orbih, who stated this at a stakeholders’ meeting in Benin, also called on the National Assembly to amend the Constitution so that governors can be held accountable for security votes’ expenditure.
However, Special Adviser to the Governor of Media, Mr. Tony Iyare, said: “The factional PDP in the state should not be playing politics with the lives and property of the people of the state. I am not in a position to tell you how much had been collected as security votes. But it is on record that this government had empowered security agencies in the state more than what PDP did in the past.
“Also, the governors should be empowered to have control over security agencies in the state because that is the only way they can work effectively. As it is now, they are just ceremonial chief security officers of the states. In that kind of situation, it will be difficult for them to control the activities of these agencies.”
Some of the leaders at the stakeholders meeting include Prof. Oserheimen Osunbor, former governor of the state; Mr. Lucky Imasuen, former Deputy Governor; Gen. Godwin Abbe, former Minister of Defence; Gen.Charles Airhiavbere, Col. Tunde Akogun, Ken Imasuagbon, Senator Odion Ugbesia, Matthew Iduoriyekenwen, Matthew Urhohide, Dr. Wilson Imogan, among others.
Orbih, who also challenged Governor Oshiomhole to make public the contract awarded to Servitech company for the expansion of Airport Road, which according to him had been revoked, alleged that the killings in the state were targeted at PDP leaders.
He said: “It is also sad that the Governor was not around to see how his people are suffering.”
… as Oshiomhole vows to tackle crimeby gabriel enogholase
Also, worried by the upsurge in criminal activities, especially kidnap-pings and assassinations in Edo State in recent weeks, Governor Adams Oshiom-hole has vowed to collaborate with security chiefs in their desire to ensure that the criminals were chased out of the state.
Oshiomhole told newsmen at Benin Airport, shortly before the state security meeting, that the development became necessary not just because of the resurgence in crimes in the state, but in view of the number of deaths recorded.
He recalled the contributions of his administration to security agencies, especially the donation of over 100 patrol vans and provision of communication gadgets worth N240 million.
Condoling families of the kidnapped victims, the governor vowed not to surrender the security of the state to hoodlums.
He berated the Federal Government for taking a large chunk of the federation account and failing to provide adequate security for the citizens.