The Bayelsa State Governor, Mr. Seriake Dickson on Monday confirmed that the state received the sum of N95billion from the Federation Account (FAAC) in one year.
The governor made this revelation while speaking at the 50th edition of the state’s monthly transparency briefing and the launch of transparency website ‘Transparency Watch’ at the Chief DSP Alamieyeseigha Memorial Banquet Hall in Yenagoa.
Detailing the fund expenditure, the governor said N12bn went to the eight local government areas in the state, bringing the state government’s receipt to N83bn.
But computations of all, the breakdown reeled out by the governor showed a total expenditure of N111.6bn, against the N95bn receipt.
He said N14.89bn was used to service bond repayments taken by the Timipre Sylva administration while salaries of workers consumed N32.38bn.
He further added that bank loans gulped about N15bn, local debts including inherited debts and overdraft N24.6bn, overhead costs for running the three arms of government N3.9bn while the sum of N20.9bn went to projects.
With the expenditure profile of about N111.7bn, the state government is in deficit of about N28bn.
He said if not for his administration’s prudent management of resources, the state would have collapsed.
Dickson decried what he described as lopsided federal system, saying that though Bayelsa is an oil-rich state, the nation has not been fair to the state.
The governor seized the occasion to attack journalists operating in the state accusing them of hiding under press freedom to work with criminal syndicates, thieves and cult leaders.
He asked journalists not to take the hospitality of the state and his government for granted saying his administration had not killed nor physically attacked anybody.
Dickson who was obviously angry at some reports in the national dailies about the happenings in the state, claimed that his administration was monitoring text messages and telephone conversations between journalists and their paymasters.
He said they were aware of persons paying money to reporters in the state to run down the state and incite the public against his government.
He said: “So, when some young men are sent to the state, they call themselves different names operating in different guises with criminal syndicates, not working to advance the course of democracy and what is good for the country and even for their profession, they come here and connive with criminals, thieves, cult leaders.
“The press, they know the cult leaders. They come here not to advance the course of the state. They come here not to assist in developing democracy in our country. They hide under the guise of press freedom and work with criminal syndicates.
“Sometimes, we know the text messages, their conversations and those who give them money just to run down the state. You Bayelsans should know that there are people who don’t want a strong clear-headed leadership, a focused leadership from Bayelsa State.
“There are those who want Bayelsa to be a weeping child of the Niger Delta. For our friends who enjoy the hospitality of our state; in our government, no one kills anybody. No one attacks anybody.
“It doesn’t happen in their own state but they will come misrepresent Bayelsa, paint Bayelsa bad, government of Bayelsa bad when in their own states they don’t have leaders that will stand up to 10 per cent of what we represent.
“They know that you people delight in running down the government. So, this is a warning to all those who are here. You have the right to be here, enjoy our hospitality but don’t run down the state.
“Don’t instigate civil unrest because you only know how it starts but you don’t know how it will end up. In some of their states, their governments have not paid salaries for 15 months; those boys that are writing nonsense, in their own state. Yet they come here, instigate our people and misrepresent things”.