The government of Abia State has responded to social media reports that alleged the office of the governor spent close to one billion naira on feeding and welfare during the third quarter.
In a press statement signed by Kazie Uko, the Chief Press Secretary (CPS) to Governor Alex Otti, it was clarified that the actual expenditure on meals and refreshments amounted to a total of N223,389,889.84 for the stated period.
The press release explained that the figure provided encompassed the expenditures of all Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs), and not solely those of the Office of the Governor, as erroneously stated in the social media reports.
It further elaborated that the mentioned figure covered expenses related to special events such as retreats, conferences, and other associated activities. In terms of welfare, the Abia State Government confirmed spending a sum of N397,520,734.84. This welfare expenditure was in line with the State Fiscal, Transparency, Accountability, and Sustainability Programme (SFTAS) initiated by the federal government. Importantly, the welfare expenses encompassed all MDAs and were not exclusive to the Governor’s Office, as falsely alleged. The welfare expenses primarily addressed health, rehabilitation, and public emergencies.
The press statement emphasized Governor Otti’s commitment to upholding transparency in his administration.
The clarification from the Abia State government aimed to address the widespread reports circulating on social media that inaccurately claimed the governor’s office alone had expended nearly one billion naira on meals and refreshments in the third quarter of the financial period.