Kano State Civil Society Situation Room (KASCISSIR) has petitioned the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over alleged withdrawal of N235,500,000 by the Kano state government for the purpose of buying votes ahead of the March 23 rerun election in the state.
A copy of the petition dated 14th March 2019, obtained by Daily Trust alleged that a sum of N235.5m was withdrawn from the Kano state government treasury through the ministry for local government and allocated to different local governments where INEC scheduled to hold supplementary elections on March 23.
“This information is contained in a leaked document dated 12th March, 2019 that is now available in public domain. Furthermore, on the 13th March, arrest of some votes buying agents have been made in some communities where gubernatorial rerun election will take place, and some of those agents confirmed that they were working for the ruling APC in the state, as one of them confirmed on freedom radio programmes (In da ranka) on Wednesday 13th March, 2019.
“We hope that EFCC will investigate this matter, while also putting some measures in those communities to ensure that votes buying, before and during election does not influence the rerun election in the state,” the petition indicated.
When contacted, the state Commissioner for Local Government, Alhaji Murtala Sule Garo dispelled the claims, saying it was mere allegation aimed at tarnishing the image of Kano state government.
Garo said the withdrawal in question was meant for execution of some projects in 13 local government areas of the state and that some of the benefiting local governments were not among the affected areas by the March 23 rerun election.
He said, “Off course some money was allocated to 13 local government areas for execution of various projects but that does not mean, the money was meant for vote buying. Take for instance Kumbotso, Kabo, Dawakin Tofa and Tsanyawa local governments they were allocated with N12m, N24m, N22m and N17.5m but no rerun election will take place there. So, it was not true that the money was allocated for votes buying.
“If it is true that the money was meant for votes buying as claimed by the civil society, then we should have shared the money among the 30 local government areas where the rerun will take place,” he said.
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