Governor Simon Bako Lalong has paid a historic visit to Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, Plateau State chapter under the able leadership the commissioner for information and communication, Hon Yakubu Dati on Monday to further consolidate on his electioneering campaign promises to the citizens of the state.
Lalong at a selected Media parley which was held at the State Secretariat of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), in Jos received commendation by the NUJ, members.
The Governor assured members of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Plateau State Council, of his administration’s readiness to continue to support the media in the state.
He said: “When I came here (NUJ Secretariat), it was not as dilapidated like this but we have a slogan and our own is to continue with abandoned projects and this is one of the abandoned projects.”
He said what the journalists are doing is not opposition but constructive criticism.
“This is not to say when you criticize you become our enemy, that is why in democracy there is room for opposition and what we want is a constructive criticism, because even if we reply you, we go back and sleep and say this man has said good thing,” he said.
The Governor said sometimes the criticism gives them some directions in Governance.
According to him, payment of advert arrears are also part of abandoned projects, saying, “some of the adverts were even used to campaign against, me but yet you bring them to me and I have started paying you and I will pay you,”
He announced the donations N500,000 to each of families of the 9 deceased journalists, adding that the earlier pledged of N2 million for the NUJ endowment fund, will be redeemed by next week, stressing that the new bus he promised the council , will be provided.
Speaking at that media parley, he said, we spent almost N22 Billion on the completed abandoned projects especially with the one at Mararaban Jama’a,” Lalong added.
Lalong, also said that his administration is not selective in citing projects in the State but remain committed to Plateau projects of transforming the state to an enviable height.
He said projects are not just cited in places of his choice, but that stakeholders and respective Local Government Councils chairmen to select and which roads to be construed by the administration.
According to him, it is important to complete all the abandoned projects, because it is benefit to the People of the State.
He said the President has directed the Federal Ministry of Finance to process for the refund of money to the state.
“I was happy when I saw that the budget was passed, and it is our hope that the money will be refunded,” he said.
He disclosed how he initiated ongoing projects by his administration and that they will be completed as soon as resources are available.
He added that lack of resources is making the Government not to mobilized contractors to continue with some of the projects and, “that is why when they stop work, some People will go on the social media saying the projects have been abandoned, we will mobilize them to go back to work.”
However, our correspondent gathered the non-availability of space force the leadership to make the choice of their friends, associates to enter by printing cards and distributing to those who are in their good book.