Dauda Lawal, the governor of Zamfara State, has claimed that when he assumed office on May 29, 2023, his administration received an empty treasury from Bello Matawalle.
“The Zamfara State we took over is in poor condition. When we took control, Zamfara was insolvent and had nothing. We inherited a lot of negative things from that state, he remarked.
During an interactive session with Zamfara professionals in Abuja, Lawal said that Matawalle had bled the state dry before leaving the government.
However, the banker-turned-politician reassured the experts that things would improve and begged their assistance in rebuilding the state for the sake of the populace as a whole.
Lawal, who claimed to have inherited a bankrupt state with a three-month salary backlog for civil officials, said that conditions were so bad when he took office that students from the state were unable to take the most recent West African Examination Council (WAEC) examinations because of the state’s massive debt load.
“Fortunately, for us, NECO (the National Examinations Council) is about to start, and if we do not do anything, the children may not write the exam,” he said, adding that the state owed WAEC and NECO, respectively, roughly N1.4 billion and N1.6 billion according to the records available.
The governor claimed the new administration recently paid off the outstanding NECO debt in order to start on a clean slate, while stressing that the circumstances made it difficult for the students to sit for prior exams.
“This can be independently verified. Education is important outside of security because, without it, we won’t get anywhere, he added, adding that the state administration has already started rebuilding primary schools and training teachers to increase their future output.