In the face of an ongoing economic crisis, the Lagos State government, led by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has faced criticism for approving substantial amounts for various expenditures, raising eyebrows among public affairs analysts.
The state’s Public Procurement Agency (PPA) records reveal an allocation of N44.8 million for the clearing of vegetables within the Epe Mixed Development Scheme. This project, awarded in May to M/S Obak Nigeria Enterprises by the Lagos State New Towns Development Authority, has drawn attention for its significant budget amidst economic challenges.
Furthermore, Governor Sanwo-Olu has faced backlash for approving N7.5 million to replace liquid fragrance in his office and N3 billion to purchase rechargeable fans for the office of his deputy, Obafemi Hamzat.
Public affairs analysts have criticized these allocations as insensitive, especially at a time when the government is urging citizens to endure economic hardship. Investigations have revealed additional questionable spending by the state government.
A notable allocation is the approval of N73.1 million for the production of official portraits of President Bola Tinubu and Governor Sanwo-Olu. Executed by the office of the Chief of Staff and awarded to Flolizvi Connect, this project has stirred controversy given the economic climate.
The Chief of Staff’s office secured N80.8 million for the procurement of ten units of foreign-used vehicles on June 19. Earlier, this office received approval for N440.75 million to purchase a brand-new Lexus LX 600 Bulletproof Sport Utility Vehicle. Additionally, N18.5 million was allocated for the supply and distribution of 2,000 Noiler chickens across local government areas.
A staggering N400 million was approved for flying hour expenses on an ad-hoc charter plane, raising further questions about the prioritization of expenditures during financial challenges.
The Lagos State government also approved N152 million for the restoration of water supply at Iduganran palace, the official residence of the Oba of Lagos. Records indicate an allocation of N581 million for the renovation of Saint Andrews Anglican Church in Oke-Popo area, highlighting diverse spending decisions amid economic hardships.
As these allocations come under scrutiny, critics argue for greater fiscal responsibility and transparency in the use of public funds during challenging economic times.