Tracka, a project initiated by pro-transparency group, BudgIT, that tracks the performance of government budgets, has said the N100m budgeted for desktop computers was not executed by the Gombe State Government but by the Federal Government.
Tracka, which also collaborates with the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, had posted photographs of the computers on its official Twitter handle.
“N100m was allocated in the 2019 budget for the supply of 100 computers in Filya, Gombe state. We tracked, and report that the computers have been delivered. #GetInvolved,” it had tweeted.
A national daily had earlier reported that it was the state government that executed the project.
However, Head of Tracka, Ilevbaoje Uadame, said on Tuesday that it was a project that was implemented by Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation through the National Lottery Trust Fund.
Uadame said investigations by Tracka showed that although N100m was budgeted for the computers, only 30 per cent of the fund (N32.7m) was actually released.
He said the supply of the computers was part of the constituency project of a former member of the House of Representatives, Binta Bello.
Uadame said it was funny that the National Lottery Trust Fund could implement such a project.
He stated, “It is not a state government project but part of the Federal Government’s 2019 project. So, what happened was that the project was voted by Binta Bello who is no longer a member of the House. She was succeeded by Simon Karu.
“N100m was budgeted for 100 computers. There was a 30 per cent release of the fund which was N32.7m and he (Karu) said he was able to facilitate the delivery of 150 computers. We have investigated and seen 100 computers. He said the remaining computers are in Katungo. But the facts as stated in the budget show that N100m was budgeted for 100 computers.”
Meanwhile, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor of Gombe State, Ismaila Misilli, has distanced the state government from the project.
Misilli, who did not respond to calls when newsmen contacted him for clarification on Monday, said the state government had no provision for such computers in its 2019 and 2020 budgets.
The statement read in part, “The Gombe State Government wishes to once again state that there is nothing like the provision of desktop computers in its budget or their procurement. All information about Gombe State budgets are adequately captured and provided on its website.”