By KATO P. LADAN, Kaduna
Residents of Sabon Tasha Ward in Chikun Local Government Area located within Kaduna metropolis are unhappy that priority projects according to the Community Development Charter (CDC) have been jettisoned for other projects not initially captured in the 2019 budget.
Councillor representing Sabon Tasha Ward, Honourable Ganaka James Kogi, made this known while fielding questions from newsmen at his constituency office on Sunday.
According to him, the local government executives did not contact him, before dumping four projects voted for in this year’s budget and replacing them with a pedestrian bridge.
“The Jema’a Road to Ungwan Dodo/Sabon Tasha GRA Road, the Ungwan Pama Central Cemetery Fencing, the Ungwan Boro to Patrick Yakowa Way prone ts which were CDC project’s were all abandoned for the pedestrian bridge which to me for now is not a priority.
” Priority projects are the roads which my people are yearning for not the pedestrian bridge which is a beautification project, ” he stressed.
Honourable Tanaka further argued that since the location where the pedestrian bridge is a federal road, the local government would have allowed the federal government or the state government to handle that as part of its urban renewal scheme.
“The Jema’a Road is the same thing, it was part of CDC thanks to the Governor who signed up to the OGP. Which makes communities to sit and define their priorities need, which Jemaa road was part of.
“It was captured for N15m but we realized that there was a virement carried out by the executive which we were not aware of.
“We learnt recently that the executive took the decision in collaboration with some other parties. The virement was done. Instead of the N15m it was slashed to N5m. The road is from Jemaa Road to Ungwan Dodo/Sabo GRA.
“What we heard was that all the projects were vired because of a pedestrian bridge that was to be set up. It took me almost a week before I found out about it and who was constructing it
“It is on a Federal Road, why the LGA is funding it, I don’t know, the executive should know,” he said.
The councillor who was voted under the platform of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) when asked if he was contacted by the executive before the replacement of projects, said he wasn’t, but remains in the dark about such decisions.
“Whether I was contacted or not, as long as it benefits my people it is okay but since it is not a priority need of the people, especially when you remove a CDC project in respect of that. Pedestrian Bridge is N87m, Ungwan Boro is about N38m., Jemaa road N15m.
“Out of entire projects for Sabon Tasha in the proposed LGA budget, only N5m is captured in the 2020 budget from CDC. Virtually all the projects are what the executive want to do, not what the people want under CDC,” he lamented.
Speaking further, he said, “Budget that we did 2019, the funds were diverted for other projects. Now that we couldn’t get anything in 2019, we would work hard to ensure that the pedestrian bridge which will gulp much funds should be converted to other needs that people yearn for, their priorities needs,” he added.