Governor Ifeanyi Okowa continued to rebuff inquiries from journalists regarding the release of N750 million to 29 members of the Delta State House as well as aides and directors for a training jamboree in the United States of America (USA). 

Governor Ifeanyi Okowa

SaharaReporters reliably learned that 29 members of the House, selected aides, and a few directors of the Assembly led by the Speaker of the House, Mr. Monday Igbuya, are to share the alleged N750 million for the leadership training jamboree billed for October 12th, 2015 in the USA.

Journalists confronted Mr. Okowa on Saturday at the Olu’s Palace, Warri, where he visited the Regent and Traditional Advisory Council of Warri Kingdom to grieve with the Itsekiri nation on the passing of the Olu of Warri, HRM Ogiame Atuwatse II.   Mr. Okowa could not provide any reasonable or convincing clarifications on the amount he allegedly released to the lawmakers for the training jamboree.

When asked to confirm what the US trip cost the State, visibly confused and jittering, Mr. Okowa simply said that "It was not true, it is all lies".  When pressed further to give Deltans the true figures released, Mr. Okowa rebuffed the journalists’ inquiries, and changed the subject to the issue of inadequate roads.

A lawmaker in the USA training jamboree confided in SaharaReporters that he would not disclose the exact figures released by the Governor for security reasons.

"I will not tell you the exact figures that was given to us by the Governor for the training for security reasons. But I will only confide in you that the Speaker and the principal officers will receive the lion share while other fellow members of the House will receive a flat share and the rest will go to a few of the selected aides and directors. 

The unnamed lawmaker continued. 

"If the figures should be revealed Deltans will stone us and protest, especially in this era of almost zero allocation. If I must tell you the truth my brother, this is the second time I am attending such a training session as a lawmaker.  The training I have received is nothing but a kangaroo training and jamboree. However, if you (a lawmaker) say you will not attend, you will be tagged as the black sheep in the house." 

Another lawmaker from one of the opposition parties in the jamboree trip, who spoke under condition of anonymity, stated that the money released to them for the USA training was to appease them.  He reasoned that no right thinking government should encourage such expensive training when States are begging the Federal Government for bailout. 

Meanwhile, an aide to one of the lawmakers on the training jamboree, challenged Mr. Okowa to disclose to Deltans the true amount approved for the training if he has nothing to hide.

The aide, who spoke under the condition of anonymity, stated that his boss confided in him that if the true amount was revealed Delta would erupt in protest. 

"I challenge Mr. Okowa to come out and tell Deltans what amount he actually released to the lawmakers for the training. Failure to do that means Mr. Okowa is hiding something from Deltans. But I insist, let Mr. Okowa come out and tell Deltans the true position of things." The aide stated.

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