The government of Prof Ben Ayade in Cross River State has been described as the worst that has happened in the state.
This assertion was made by the former special adviser to the immediate past governor of the state, Liyel Imoke, Dr Peter Oti.
He spoke in Calabar at a 3-day workshop on budget tracking and investigating public expenditure organised by Daily Trust Foundation in collaboration with MacArthur Foundation for Journalists in South-South Nigeria.
He alleged that Ayade’s government has not bothered to follow the fundamentals of budget preparation, documentation and implementation.
He also claimed that Ayade’s government does not bother to follow what Liyel Imoke’s government introduced which, he said, is the global best practice.
“The government of Senator Liyel Imoke introduced and maintained global best practices in budget preparation, documentation and implementation.
“Even though we were not expecting them to adopt all that we introduced and handed over but the basic and standard budgeting standards around the world are completely neglected.
“For instance, do they consult with the people through Budget Consultative Forums where inputs are taken from ordinary people, traditional, civil society, media etc to build up the budgets?
“You find the Governor every year christening budgets with flamboyant, laughable and fabricated names that do not connect with the people and have no economic relevance. Budgets must carry the people along so that they can be seen as the people’s budgets.
“This is the worst government that has so far befallen the people of the state. And I pray that God should not allow Ayade’s type of government come again.”
He challenged the present government to produce documents that can chronicle in detail the seven annual budgets the governor has so far presented to the people.
“In our time, we even went to the extent of translating our budgets into the three major languages in the state, including Efik, Ejagham and Bekwara”
Oti, now a University of Calabar Don, charged journalists and civil society organisations (CSO) to monitor federal, and state governments, MDA’s budgets from preparation levels through performance tracking and post-performance.