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Does Gombe State Owe N110 Billion? #NO

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CLAIM: The Transition Committee set up by Gombe State Governor, Inuwa Yahaya says that Gombe State’s debt is N110 billion



The Chairman of the Transition Committee, Mohammed Kabir, while presenting the Committee’s report to the then Gombe governor-elect on May 11 said that Gombe state had a debt profile of N110 billion as at December 2018. 

The 31-member transition committee was inaugurated on April 3, to organise a smooth transition of government from the outgoing Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) government in the state. 

In response to the allegation, the immediate past Governor, Ibrahim Dankwambo denied it, claiming that the state’s debt was not as high as N110 billion, and that the state owes no bank. He, however, did not provide any statistics about the state’s debt profile. 


A check on the websites of the Debt Management Office (DMO), the official institution that coordinates the management of Nigeria’s entire debt, and the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the agency that provides official statistics on all the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) in Nigeria, reveals that as at December 31, 2018, Gombe State’s domestic debt was N63,337,930,142.60 (N63 billion); while the external debt was $37,406.069.57 ($37 million), which translates to N11,483,575,432.00 (N11 billion).

[To get the naira value of the external debt, Gombe state’s external debt was multiplied by N307, the official exchange rate of a dollar to naira as at December 31, 2018.]

If the domestic debt of N63 billion is added to the external debt of N11billion, the result is N74,821,687,574.60 (N74 billion); a figure which is less than the N110 billion the transition committee claimed is Gombe State’s debt. This therefore means that the claim that Gombe State debt is N110 billion as at December 31, 2018 is FALSE.

When the Secretary of the Transition Committee, Zubairu Umar was contacted to provide concrete evidence about how they arrived at the state’s debt, he said the committee relied on undisclosed “sources”, and will provide us with more information in due course. [We are yet to receive further information].


Gbenga Samuel Salau is a graduate of Communication and Language Arts, University of Ibadan. While in the University, he was a campus journalist reporting for the Independence Hall and Faculty of Arts Press Clubs, with the pen name SSG. As a campus journalist, he won the following awards; Independence Hall Press Best News writer; University of Ibadan Union of Campus Journalists’ Best News Reporter/Writer; First Runner-up, Reuben Abati Award for Investigative Journalism; Association of Faculty of Arts Students’ Press Best Reporter; University of Ibadan Union of Campus Journalists’ Best Political Writer; Winner, Reuben Abati Award for Investigative Journalism, and University of Ibadan Union of Campus Journalists’ Best Interviewer.
 He rose to be the editor-in-chief of Association of faculty of Arts Press Clubs. He joined The Guardian Newspaper, Nigeria after graduation. And as a reporter, he has covered events and attended conferences, workshops within and outside Nigeria. In 2014, he won the Promasidor Quill Award Best Report on Nutrition and DAME Business Reporting category. In the 2015 edition of the Promasidor Quill Award, he won the best Report on Nutrition and Brand Advocate Categories.
       In 2016, he was the first runner up in the NB Reporter of the Year and SERAs Award for CSR Reporting, aside winning the Print Journalist of the year award at the 2016 Nigeria Media Merit Award (NMMA). In 2018, he was second runner-up in the Lagos Reporting Category of DAME.     Gbenga Salau loves travelling, reading, and listening to songs with good lyrics no matter the genre.

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