Hours after he informed the people of the state that his government has spent N1b to contain coronavirus disease, Governor Godwin Obaseki came under the assessment of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Edo State chapter.
Taking the governor on his Sunday briefing of Government House Correspondents, the PDP Publicity Secretary, Chris Nehikhare, in a press statement asked Obaseki and other officials of his government to be more transparent, while attempting to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The opposition party said: “We reject the humongous figure (over N1 billion) already being bandied to have been spent. Edo PDP rejects the attempt by rogues in government circles to use the COVID-19 pandemic to fleece our treasury. Sunday’s COVID-19 speech of Obaseki is disappointing, curious and scandalous.
“We condemn the financial opacity surrounding the COVID-19 fight in Edo State, amid the disclosure by Obaseki that over N1billion has so far been expended and palliatives provided for over 50,000 vulnerable Edolites, despite the diversion of the palliatives.
“We are saddened that Obaseki again failed to show leadership and he displayed total lack of touch with reality, as he failed to address the issue of palliatives diversion. It is more painful that Edo governor could not address the immediate needs of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) and their employees or provide a trajectory that will take care of their future, as the month of April draws to an end.”
The main opposition party also cautioned officials of the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led Edo government to stop using the deadly pandemic as a gateway to fleecing the state’s treasury.
Governor Obaseki had announced ten-day dusk-to-dawn curfew from Monday and he disclosed that the over N1 billion of his administration’s limited resources had already been spent to fight the deadly pandemic., asking well-meaning citizens of the state and corporate organisations to donated towards the COVID-19 purse of the state.
15 persons have so far tested positive for coronavirus in Edo, with seven of them already discharged, while two have died.