11 February 014, Lagos – Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN) has called on the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, the management of stste-run oil firm, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and those connected with the missing $10 billion oil money to speak out in the interest of the nation.
Fashola, who spoke at the Lagos House, Ikeja yesterday said continued silence of the stakeholders on the issue constituted an injustice against the ordinary Nigerians who have had to contribute from their meagre earnings to fund projects and programmes that are constitutionally the responsibility of government.
The governor identified the provision of security as an item which naturally falls within the ambit of the responsibility of government but which individuals and private organisations are now contributing to provide in order to secure themselves and their environment while the Federal Government could not account the nation’s commonwealth. He said the missing money could go a long way to fund the Police and strengthen security in the country.
Thanking organisations and individuals who have been contributing to the State’s Security Trust Fund, Governor Fashola said: “The tragedy of our nation is that while we are debating whether we have accounted for $20 billion or $10 billion, ordinary citizens are contributing money to fund the responsibility of government.
“It hurts me but this is where we are because you can only wonder and imagine what $10 billion can do for the Police; what $10 billion can do in terms of vehicles, in terms of the kind of truck donated, in terms of equipment. But I hope that things get better.”
The governor urged those concerned in the missing money saga to speak out, adding that the matter could only be resolved when it is brought out to public domain.
“I have said the issue of accounting for that money must be resolved publicly in the interest of Nigerians. It is a debate that all of us must participate.
“Peacefully, we will resolve it, whether it is $10 billion or $20 billion. We must know where that money ended up and everybody that has a duty, including the Minister herself, must speak up now,” he said.
– The Nation