Mohammed Abubakar, former governor of Bauchi state, says he only spent N1.2 billion on funeral materials and not N2.3 billion as alleged.
Speaking through Mukhtar Jibril, his media aide, the former governor said he inherited the practice of buying funeral materials from his predecessors due to its impact on the people.
Bala Mohammed, governor of the state, had accused his predecessor of spending N2.3 billion on funeral materials in five months.
Jibril said the purchases passed through “due process” and awarded to qualified contractors.
“In response to media reports on the issue of mahogany and shrouds procured for burials, we want to state that this is a practice inherited by the government of Abubakar from its predecessors. Considering its significance and impact on the people, especially the bereaved, it decided to continue with it,” he said in a statement.
“However, the project, like any other of the same magnitude, was awarded to qualified contractors. Based on the available verifiable record, N1,270,743,520 had been expended since its inception and not the exaggerated figure of N2.3 billion mischievously posted on the social media by critics.
“We urge the good people of the state to disregard this insinuation and act of desperation by elements of retrogression.
”Besides, every contract awarded was subjected to the scrutiny and appraisal of the due process agency in accordance with public procurement law, contract agreement, payment of tax due on such contracts and other requirements.”