The Lagos State Government has finally replied to the viral post by Funso Doherty, revealing budgetary procurement for 440 million SUVs for the office of the Chief Staff and N7 million fragrance for the office of the governor, among other luxurious expenses.
In a press release signed by the Director General Lagos State Procurement Agency, Fatai Onafowote, the State government said the expenses are in line with the country’s current economic conditions.
Doherty, a politician and chartered accountant, pointed out in a viral post on X on Saturday that the Lagos State government spent N440 million on Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs) for the office of the Chief of Staff, N7 million on diffuser, N2 billion on fans, rechargeable lamps, among others, in its 2023 supplementary budget procurement.
In response, the Lagos State government noted that while these expenses might be perceived to be exorbitant by the public, it is not out of sync with the current economic conditions of the country, noting that they are in tandem with the economic realities of the country.
Speaking on the procurement of the SUVs as well as the diffuser expenses, the government said the following:
- “This appears excessive and out-of-tune with both the prevailing circumstances and the people’s mood. It should be scrutinized as to the need and justification for such a vehicle purchase and also value for the money. This is in tandem with current economic realities.
- “On the diffuser, this covers the entire period of 2023 one year. It is also not limited to Mr. Governor’s office but extends to several offices and state houses.”
N2 Million, not a Billion spent on Rechargeable Fans and Lights
The government also corrected the notion that the sum of N2 billion was allocated for rechargeable fans and lights for the office of the deputy governor, Obafemi Hamzat.
In its response, Onafowote noted that the accurate figure was N2,017,840.00 in total. Doherty had claimed that the government spent the sum of N2,017,840,000 on rechargeable fans and lights.
However, the Lagos government said the figure was not correct. He said,
- “This is not correct. The contract is for N2,017,840.00 and this is what is contained in the Agency’s website as well as the registered letter of Awards.”
What You Should Know
On Saturday, a Lagos-based politician and chartered accountant, pointed out some appropriation of funds in the 2023 procurements in the Lagos budget, raising questions about the management of the funds.
Among the listed items on the procurements a N440 million SUVs for the office of the Chief of Staff, N7 million for diffusers for the office of the governor as well as an alleged N2 billion for rechargeable fans and lights for the office of the deputy.
In addition, Doherty noted that the government should review some of the expenses as they border on mismanagement of state resources. In a letter directed to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the accountant noted,
- “I have had the opportunity to go through the register of public procurement awards by LASG, its ministries, and Department Agencies for the second and third quarters of 2023, as reported by the Public Procurement Agency. This attached schedule highlights selected awards which, in my opinion, require greater scrutiny.
Response from Public Procurement Agency, Lagos State. @jidesanwoolu @drobafemihamzat @Lsppagovng1 @gbenga_omo @gboyegaakosile @BSaluHundeyin @Mr_JAGs #LASG #AGreaterLagosRising pic.twitter.com/CkItpjjIyx
— The Lagos State Govt (@followlasg) November 21, 2023