Sanwo-Olu admits mistakes were made in Lagos State budgetary expenditure

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has admitted that the state government may have made mistakes on some of the line items in the records released by the Lagos State Public Procurement Agency (LSPPA) as some of its officials have come out to show.

According to a video posted by the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Gboyega Akosile, this was made known by Governor Sanwo-Olu while speaking at the commissioning of the newly built operational headquarters of the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA) at Ikeja.

This was his first official reaction to the outrage that greeted the procurement record of LSPPA that was recently made public.

Sanwo-Olu, who welcomed the open letter by the governorship candidate of the Action Democratic Congress (ADC) in Lagos, Funso Doherty, assured him that the government will continue to publish its spending and keep it open for public scrutiny.

State government has nothing to hide

The governor noted that the controversy was unnecessary, stressing that the state government had nothing to hide in its public expenditure.

  • Sanwo-Olu said, “Over the weekend, we saw on social media how some people can politically turn around all of our attempts to be responsible, transparent, and committed to good governance. We don’t have a problem with any individual. We, indeed, acknowledged that this is the way it should be. We appreciate the fact that people can look at us in the face and say you need to do well in this area.
  • “We don’t have a problem with the originator of the open letter; in short, we like him and we thank him. Indeed, if we are seen as a government that is transparent and responsible, we should not be shy of criticism. But, it is only when criticism is malicious and is misrepresenting the truth, that is when there will be a problem.
  • “Officers in Lagos State have come out to show that there could be mistakes on some lines of items. There was a particular issue where an item was meant to be N2 million but was written as N2 billion. There are many discrepancies that have been corrected by PPA. We are not going to join issues with anyone on social media. All we are committed to is continuous service to the people of Lagos.”

Sanwo-Olu said Lagos had maintained open books for checks and balances, pointing out that the state had judiciously appropriated funds for projects and services that benefited the residents.

What you should know

  • The governor and the state government has faced a lot of criticisms in the past few days over the expenditure pattern of the state in the face of bad economic situation and high level of poverty.
  • Recall that a few days ago, a Lagos-based politician and chartered accountant, Funsho Doherty, had 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.

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