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Untold Story Of How Organizers Mismanaged Over 250M Nwonyo Festival Fund


• Committee Members, Commissioner Trade Blames 

Controversy has continued trailing the just- concluded 2024 Nwonyo fishing festival in Ibi, Taraba State as members of the organizing committee keep trading blames and counter blames at each other over inadequacies during the event.

Top government officials who spoke on condition of animosity to our reporter expressed shock at the poor outing despite over N250 million reportedly released by the state government to the committees to organize the festival. 

The committee members are also demanding an explanation on how the over 250m fund released to the  Commissioner of Ecotourism and Cultural Heritage, Rev. Titus Nagombe for the festival was spent.

Taraba Truth and Facts gathered that the fund was paid directly to Commissioner of Ecotourism and Cultural Heritage, Rev. Titus Nagombe account because his ministry coordinated the planning of the festival. 

In an encounter with prominent dignitaries and top government officials with our correspondent who covered the two-day event it was a show of shame as two top government officials the Commissioner of Ecotourism and Cultural Heritage, Rev. Titus Nagombe and members of House Assembly representing Nguroje Constituency and House Committee Chairman on Information and Reorientation, Hon. Nelson Len who also doubles as committee Chairman, Media and Publicity for the fishing festival were allegedly sited trading verbal words before commencement of the program.

Sources said the Commissioner had earlier delayed releasing funds for  Media and Publicity committee to carry out its activities until few hours to the event.

" The problem was much, because Rev. Titus Nagombe was incharge of funds and he started becoming 'unreachable' to other committee members even some fellow Commissioners could not reach him to release some funds to them,  Hon. Nelson Len as committee Chairman, Media and Publicity for the fishing festival only got 5m few hours to the event."

Attendees who spoke with our correspondent, expressed dismay, at the alleged way and manner, the event was handled by both the commissioner and the organizers of the event.



Adding to the controversy was the revelation that the car awarded to the first-place winner had been procured by a petroleum dealer and subsequently refurbished. 


This discovery raised serious questions about the management of funds earmarked for the festival, leading to accusations of greed against the organizers.


An anonymous source within the festival's ranks bemoaned the mismanagement, attributing it to the organizers' greed and their eagerness to impress the governor, who had allocated a significant budget for the occasion.


However speaking at the event, Governor Kefas assured that Nwonyo fishing festival has come to stay pointing out that the overall essence of the culture was to promote unity, peace and progress of the entire Kwararafa kingdom and by extension Nigerians.


He noted the Nwonyo fishing festival was unique in the sense that it attracts people from divergent cultures including foreigners to showcase opportunity potentials.

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