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INSECURITY: Gov Al-Makura begs SERAP for more time to disclose spending on security votes



The governor of Nasarawa State, Umaru Tanko Al-Makura, has pleaded with Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) to allow him more time “within which to compile and provide details on the spending by the state on security.”

The governor said he will need more than seven days to process the details given that the information being requested by SERAP covers a period of eight years.

SERAP deputy director, Kolawole Oluwadare, revealed this know in a statement he made available to newsmen this Sunday.

The group had through the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act last month sent and requested that the 36 state governors as well as President Muhammadu Buhari should “provide information on specific details of spending of appropriated public funds as security votes between 2011 and 2019, given the current security realities in the country.”

The governor reportedly replied in a letter with reference number NS/MOJ/ADM/108/VOL1/65, and sent on his behalf by the Nasarawa State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice.

“I refer to your letter dated 12th April 2019 requesting information on the spending of security votes by Nasarawa State between 2011 to date. I am directed to draw your attention to the fact that the information being requested covers a period of eight years and will require more than 7 days to process. We shall revert to you as soon as the information is ready,” the letter read in part.

According to Oluwadare, SERAP had on May 17, 2019 replied the letter and had urged the governor to fast-track the process to ensure that the information is sent to it before the expiration of the governor’s term on May 29, 2019.

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“This would be a perfect parting gift to the people of Nasarawa, and show the way for 35 other state governors and the Federal Government that have failed, so far, to respond to the FOI requests on security votes spending.

“In light of your request, SERAP is happy to extend the period within which to provide the requested information. We would be grateful if the information is now provided to us within 7 days of the receipt and/or publication of this response, failing which SERAP shall take all appropriate legal action to compel Nasarawa state to comply with our request,” SERAP response read in part.

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