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Obi carpets AGF over workshop in London

Peter Obi | Fille Image

Says it’s insensitivity to the plight of Nigerians

‘Nigerians must vehemently denounce and condemn the decision of Nigeria’s Accountant-General’s Office to hold a workshop in London’

By Valentine Amanze

The Labour Party’s (LP) presidential candidate in the 2023 general election, Mr. Peter Obi, has hit hard on the office of the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF) for holding a workshop in London for all finance commissioners in Nigeria.

He said that it was insensitive of the office of AGF to hold the workshop in London, when poverty is ravaging Nigeria.

Obi also called on Nigerians to resist and denounce “such recklessness and a clear show of feelingless.”

Obi made the condemnation in his X handle, @PeterObi, at the weekend.

His words: “Nigerians must vehemently denounce and condemn the decision of Nigeria’s Accountant-General’s Office to hold a workshop in London. This decision is not only unacceptable but also deeply troubling on multiple levels.

“Given the prevailing hardship in the country and the pitiable state of our national currency, any public function abroad amounts to insensitivity on the part of the government and any agency or individuals involved.

“First and foremost, it represents a blatant disregard for fiscal responsibility and prudent expenditure of public funds. At a time when Nigeria is grappling with economic challenges, including inflation, currency devaluation, and a widening budget deficit, it is utterly irresponsible to squander taxpayer money on extravagant overseas workshops.”

Also read: Obi decries Nigeria’s worsening insecurity, says abduction of school children unacceptable

Obi wondered why the resources allocated for such purposes were not directed towards addressing pressing domestic needs, such as healthcare, education, infrastructure, and poverty alleviation.

He said that the workshop in London sent the wrong message to Nigerians and the international community.

“It perpetuates the perception of government officials indulging in luxury and extravagance at the expense of the common citizen. It fosters a culture of elitism and detachment from the realities faced by ordinary Nigerians, who struggle daily to make ends meet amidst rising living costs and limited access to essential services,” Obi said.

Obi pointed out that there were many experts in Nigeria capable of providing the required training and expertise, stressing, “By outsourcing such activities to foreign countries the government not only undermines local expertise but also fails to leverage the wealth of knowledge and experience within its borders.

“Additionally, holding a workshop in London raises concerns about transparency and accountability in government procurement processes. There must be full disclosure and justification for why London was chosen as the venue, as well as how the selection of vendors and contractors was made. Any hint of impropriety or favouritism in awarding contracts for such events must be thoroughly investigated and addressed.”

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