Open Letter to Presidential Governor Bello; We Pay You Huge Salary To Manage Kogi, Not To Roam Around Abuja

His Excellency

Alhaji Yahaya Adoza Bello
The Presidential Governor from Kogi State,

Dear Sir,

Demand to Justify Your Huge Salary and Allowances in Discharge of Functions as Governor of Kogi State

Your Excellency, I write to remind you of the onerous task of being the Governor of a state.

Also, I wish to bring to your attention that the highest office in a state or country still remains the Office of the Citizens. We employ Governors, Senators, Lawmakers and even Presidents to help drive our society with our commonwealth. This is the core reason why elected political office holders are referred to as Public Servants. Yes, you were elected to serve us, the citizens.

We, the citizens, ‘advertised’ the vacant position of Governor through the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and you voluntarily applied for the post. The remuneration is juicy with other perks to ensure you are comfortable while discharging the tough task the office demands. Your huge salary and allowances are not gifts, it was designed, like that of top executives in companies, to guarantee your comfort and ensure you’re not distracted while in office. We even have special pension package for you after your service in the office.

Without doubt, the tasks attached to the office are gargantuan, demanding longer hours of work, critical thinking, devotion and making decisions at the speed of light. You will have to multi-task most times – device ways to unlock untapped potentials, constantly rejig security apparatus, attending to ending demands from the workforce, monitor and evaluate policies, laws and edicts, resolve land and chieftaincy related issues, attend to natural disasters, gather data and forecast future occurrences and changes in needs, bridge immediate and forecasted infrastructural gaps etc. Given the onerous responsibilities, the pay package was designed to adequately compensate you and keep you motivated.

However, it has come to our notice that you abdicate your responsibilities as Governor of Kogi state without recourse to the rules of engagement and terms of reference that dictates how you function as a servant of the people.

Since you assumed office on January 27, 2020 for a second term in office, you have been become a truant, worse than the level of truancy you were notorious for during your first term in office.

We understand your desire to be President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in 2023 and we believe it is within your right as a Nigerian to aspire for any office. However, abdicating your primary responsibility to pursue other goals different from what you are current gainfully employed to do is a misnomer.

You are employed to serve as Governor of Kogi State but you are busy roaming around Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), and loitering around Aso Rock, the Presidential Villa, as Presidential Governor from Kogi state. This is not right. We have a sitting President operating from Abuja, wait till 2023 before you take over the Federal Capital from the incumbent President.

While we understand that the demand of your office can and should sometimes take him out of the state, but a Governor who spends far more time outside his state, leaves much to be desired.

It is on record that you did not spend up to 24 hours in Kogi in the month of April 2021. You left for Abuja on April 1 and did not visit Kogi until 3rd May. You attended EXCO meeting on the 5th and departed for Abuja on the 8th. You returned for few more functions including wedding of the daughter of House of Assembly Speaker, Hon. Mathew Kolawole.

You visited Kogi on 31st May and spent just 3 days. After EXCO meeting on June 2, you went back to Abuja and only returned to Kogi for your birthday celebration. That was 16th to 19th. Immediately after your birthday celebrations, you left for Abuja and was not seen again in Kogi for the next 30 days, until the Sallah festival of 19th-20th July, which you observed at Okene. On that visit, you did not make a stop in Lokoja at all. You passed through on the 21st on your return journey to the FCT, where you remained for another month.

Your last visit was to attend the funeral service of late Justice Moses Bello. This time, you visited Lokoja and visited some project sites leaving behind an unprecedented traffic gridlock in Lokoja that kept commuters on the road till 2am. You hurried left for Abuja same day after the public show. You have not returned since then. Even on Independence Day, yesterday, you sent your message to us from Abuja.

We pay your well enough to demand that you return to your duty post and run the administration effectively and efficiently.

Abidemi Olalekan writes from Lokoja.

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