By Abdulrasheed Akogun and Ibrahim Sheriff
Barring any last-minute changes, the Kwara State Governor, Mal. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq has concluded arrangement to spend .34 billion naira on the purchase of official cars, Fresh Insight can authoritatively report.
This much was the outcome of an unannounced State Executive Council meeting, presided over by the Governor which held virtually on March 2, 2022, wherein memo for the purchase of the car was presented and adopted by the council.
Suspiciously however, the outcome of the council meeting was not made public unlike previous meetings wherein a press release or conference is always organized at the end of the meeting, which usually serves as an avenue to inform the populace of the resolutions of the Council meeting, especially those relating with award, approval and scope of contracts among other government activities.
A memo presented to the Council by the Secretary to the State Government, Prof. Mamman Saba Jibril and exclusively obtained by Fresh Insight partly reads, “…It may interest the Council to note that since the inception of this administration till date, all the Hon. Commissioners have been deploying their personal vehicles in driving the State policies and programmes in line with the Cabinet responsibility of their various ministries.
“Therefore, the sacrifices, commitments and selfless services of these State appointees in this regard are highly commendable. While developmental projects are already scaled up across the nooks and crannies of the State, the tasks ahead of the Hon. Commissioners are enormous and there is an urgent need to proffer a perfectly legitimate arrangement that will ease their movement across the State in a bid to ensure that, Policies and Programmes of Government are conscientiously executed
“Accordingly, the procurement unit of my office has established contacts with three reputable companies to get direct cost of SUV full option…Mikano International Limited, Affordable Cars Limited and Auto Meridian Limited.
“After due consultation, my office considered it apt to patronize Mikano International Ltd for the direct purchase of 20 number of SUV Coolray full option at the cost of #15,846,000.00 (Fifteen Million, Eight Hundred and Forty-Six Naira only) per unit, which translates to the sum of #340,689,000.00 (Three hundreds during forty million, six hundred and Eighty nine Naira) inclusive of 7.5% VAT” it added
Recall that in November 2019, the AbdulRazaq led administration purchased no fewer than twenty five (25) operation vehicles (Toyota Hilux) for the State Civil Service, saying the gesture was to strengthen efficient service delivery and conducive working atmosphere.
However, Fresh Insight observed that some of those newly procured Toyota Hilux vans were being used by some commissioners as official vehicles, while others were used by some Party leaders without any connection to the Civil service.
Kwara state presently has twenty (20) ministries and consequently, 20 commissioners. Each of these ministries will get a SUV Coolray full option for the use of Honorable commissioners.
The AbdulRazaq led Kwara State government, had via a memorandum presented by the Head of Service, Mrs Modupe Oluwole, at a virtual cabinet meeting on Friday 20th August, 2021 chaired by Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, revert to the old order left behind by former Gov. AbdulFatah Ahmed by splitting hitherto merged government ministries from sixteen (16) to twenty (20).
The development came twenty (20) months after the government pruned the ministries in the state civil service from 19 inherited from the past administration to 16 ministries, citing cost cutting as excuse.