By Mumini AbdulKareem
The torrid time facing the immediate past local government chairmen in Kwara State assumed another dimension following the request of the ex-council bosses for the balance of their car loan obtained in 2014, to be waived by the state government, National Pilot, can authoritatively report.
The local government chairmen and the entire immediate past council executives under the Forum of Ex-council 2013-16 wrote to Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed last Monday seeking for the waiver.
In the letter signed by three members of the Board of Trustees (BoT) of the last elected council chairmen, Alhassan Bagudu (Kaiama), Engr. Bayo Alao (Oyun) and Saka Obalana (Asa) sighted by this reporter last night, they hinged their inability to pay back the loan on the precarious financial situation in the councils then.
Those involved include 16 local government chairmen, their vices, secretaries, 80 supervisors and 193 councillors amounting to 321 officers.
Checks by this medium, last night, revealed that the chairmen, their deputies and the councillors obtained N6, N3.5 and N2 million loan for the car purchase, respectively.
It was gathered that about 75 per cent of the loan had so far been remitted to the local governments which obtained the loan in October 2014 in conjunction with the state government after they had served one year in office.
In the letter written to Governor Ahmed through the office of the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Alhaji Mohammed Haruna Tambiri, the forum appreciated the state government for all previous support.
Titled request for car loan, parts of the letter read:
“We write to appreciate your Excellency’s kind assistance to us. We are equally following with keen interest your vigorous and laudable efforts in making Kwara State great…
“As Oliver Twist, we are hereby seeking for your kind assistance to please wave off our car loan which could not be offset during our tenure as a result of the financial predicament faced by our council then.
“We shall be very grateful if we could get succour by waiving the remaining balance of the car loan…”
Some of the immediate past council bosses have been going through financial crisis with a number of them selling houses and other property to meet their monetary obligations.
Before this waiver request, the affected officers had earlier requested the governor to pay their remaining furniture and severance allowances.
Recall that Governor Ahmed recently ordered the release of N100 million for the payment of part of the severance package arrears due to political office holders in the state.
The gesture was reportedly made from part of the second tranche of the Paris Loan refund released to the state by the Federal Government.