The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Bayelsa says the ‘astronomical’ rise in cost of the Bayelsa Cargo Airport from N40 to N80 billion is worrisome and a waste of public funds.
The APC said that the reaction of Bayelsa Government to its allegation on the project was a failed attempt to divert attention from obvious lack of fiscal discipline and prudence by the state government.
The party said that “serious issues of accountability, due process and democratic governance” raised in its Nov. 15 statement regarding the airport project was never addressed.
Mr Doifie Buokoribo, the APC Publicity Secretary in Bayelsa, said in a statement in Yenagoa on Monday that the state government had carefully avoided the critical concerns raised by the party.
The party said that by the diversionary response, the Dickson government had only confirmed the allegation, stressing that “Governor Dickson is guilty as charged.”
The APC had criticized the Bayelsa Government for borrowing from the money market at the current high interest rate and described it as a ploy to siphon public funds.
It alleged that the high interest of N62 billion to be paid on the N80 billion loan would stifle the state of funds through the monthly repayment obligations in the next eight years.
It said that the project lacked vital inter-modal network for easy accessibility.
The APC said that the N80 billion project was inflated and described it as “clearly the most expensive airport project in Nigeria.”
Buokoribo said that Bayelsa Government’s response was silent on the economic viability of funding such a capital intensive project from the money market at huge interest rates.
“The Bayelsa State Government’s reaction to our statement of Nov. 15, 2018, on the Bayelsa Airport scam did not address any of the issues we raised. This is unfortunate, but understandable.
“Unfortunate because the government is attempting to divert the attention of the Bayelsa populace from the serious issues of accountability, due process and democratic governance.