RE : FINTIRI AND THE BURDEN OF DEBT By George Kushi

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RE : FINTIRI AND THE BURDEN OF DEBT

In response to your write-up on the debt profile of Adamawa under Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri’s stewardship one cannot fail to appreciate some of your concerns.

However, certain aspects seem to have been addressed superficially and lacking in depth. Probably for that reason the total amount right from Nyako’s time till date were lodged on Governor Ahmadu Fintiri. By so doing you did not do justice to the present governor in it’s effort to keep the economy of the state afloat.
The misadventure of the previous regimes that were geared deliberately to cripple this government should have been considered in your discourse as to the root causes of debt profile of the state.

The major teething problems that Governor Fintiri had to gropple with include the overbloated civil service bills deliberately created to create disaffection between the government and people that know that due process was not followed and for all foreseeable were made to cripple the state from day one. Unfortunately for the perpetrators Fintiri forded their running political quicksand. To all well meaning people this was a major victory for good governance.

But Fintiri did not waste time celebrating that victory because there are other pitfalls ahead.
Ahead of the government was the hydra-headed issue of insecurity further orchestrated and fuelled by creating discord along ethnic divides. This was handled maturedly and is yielding positive results.
Zayyad all these consume money which the government has to cough out. Should government fail to address these problems the state will be worse off tripple-fold. Money had to be used and morally sound and responsible government like the one on ground had to address problems created by previous governments and at the same time be futuristic to preempt issues that may arise in future.

Ramat College deterioted to its sorry state not in the past two years,but under the stewardship of of one of its “old boys”. Other institutions across the state also have myriads of problems that deserve attention. Is it out of place to borrow and address these compelling issues? Logically,the government has no choice but to borrow and put the necessary structures on ground, unfortunately results from such enterprises do not yield results instantly.

Zayyad,your observations are noted,especially the fact that “if not directed to productive parts of the economy …..will constitute an impediment to long term growth of the economy,open windows of mismanagement and create citizen mistrust of the government”. This is quite true,but do rest assured that this government does not allow things to be run unchecked, ensures proper accounting and supervision at all levels.

We will not put the figures you are quoting into contention,but rather in addressing the substance of the issue ask pertinent questions as to whether the projects are worth implementing,and are they timely? If they are timely and worth implementing,our ardent prayers should be that the fruits of the enterprises will have the desired effects that this focussed government has embarked upon. The housing scheme is for the people and the university a lasting legacy for the state,country and all nations.

The world over agribusiness is the in-thing. The rudiments of life for mankind began with basic implements of hunting,gathering and later land cultivation. In the process technology emerged as the multiplying factor. This government is at the advanced stage of providing food, shelter and education( technology). To these initiatives,future generations will be grateful for their assured future of blissful lives.

Zayyad,in economics,especially developmental economics certain factors come in to play. A road constructed fourteen years ago cannot go at the same cost today. One ” mudu” of beans that I use to buy at two hundred to three hundred naira ten years ago ( it has no direct connection to the dollar rate)has quadrupled and I have to settle for half.

The same for meat, tomatoes, …..We can go on and on. The incentive to work on the Pella-Maiha road has appreciated in terms of cost. Anyway,locals can be used to supervise the projects,but are they knowledgeable in that field to be the cutting edge? Are they above board in terms of sharp practices that have characterised the major features of contracts awarded in the past? To these questions, I am sure only the man that will answer for all has the prerogative to decide who can effectively deliver what is required.

In the same vein comes the issue of “distributing wealth”. The issue of distributing wealth to the average politician means sharing money inside Government House as was done in the past. No more of this in this dispensation. As a fact loyalty can be rewarded,but surely not at the detriment of our common wealth. There is yet a problem of who collects the money on behalf of the voters? Rewarding active party members as you assume it does not really tantamount to equitable wealth distribution,it is gratification,but a necessary thing in our political framework.

The mention of “misplacement of priorities”strikes of discontent of government’s activities as a whole. In the first place who decides the imperatives of the moment? The person at the helm,the person with all the reports that oversees the affairs of the state is the one in a better position to decide the precedence of issues. This again is the prerogative of the governor.

Well,on the issue of mistrust,this is not the broad picture but is only a reflection of the wishful thinking of people that never wished this government well. They are at the best of their chicanary only because Fintiri is doing what five previous regimes could not do.
Where there no challenges the best cannot become manifest. The challenges before Fintiri and the activities of his traducers have not made him to falter or waver , that is something we should be grateful for.

Thank you for your observations.

George Kushi is the Chief Press Secretary to the Deputy Governor of Adamawa State and writes in from Government House Yola.

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