Ben Bruce goes berserk, attacks Tracka over constituency projects

Senator Ben Murray-Bruce representing Bayelsa East in the 8th assembly
Senator Ben Murray-Bruce representing Bayelsa East in the 8th assembly

Senator Ben Murray-Bruce representing Bayelsa East Senatorial District has gone berserk on Twitter after transparency platform, Tracka, demanded an update on a N220m project he nominated.

Murray-Bruce, who will not be returning to the 9th National Assembly wasted no time in misconstruing the demand by Tracka and labeling them as a “deceptive and dishonest organization”.

Requesting an update from the senator, Tracka explained that it was aware that 50 per cent of the funds for the constituency project has been paid by the Federal Government of Nigeria.

The organization then demanded that the senator who nominated the project provide progress report.

“Dear Sen. Ben Murray-Bruce, we are aware that the FG has released 50% funds to MDAs. Can you provide an update on the N220m projects you nominated in the 2018 budget to your constituents,” Tracka quizzed on Twitter.

But Senator Murray-Bruce was having none of it. He immediately lashed out at Tracka, claiming that Tracka was a dishonest organization. He also said he had made two attempts of responding to Tracka.

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In his response, he wrote, “Dear Tracka, You are a deceptive and dishonest organisation trying to deceive the public. I’ve answered this same question TWICE. I received NO PENNY for any project. If you truly want to know, contact the ministry involved. Same thing I said last time,” he tweeted.

He then went on a polemic, claiming that Tracka is deliberately feeding the public wrong information.

Those who fund Tracka NG, should be aware that what they are doing is manipulation of public sentiments. If you truly want accountability, why would you leave a ministry handling funding and implementation of projects, to come after Legislators who aren’t involved in the project?

But the senator was not done. A Twitter user, Kuze jumped to the senator’s defence stating that legislators don’t involve in the contracts. The senator then tweeted yet again. “Thank you. This body, Tracka NG know this very well. I myself have explained this to them twice here. But they believe the public is unaware and they take advantage of that to manipulate their minds. It is deliberately dishonest and deceptive of them.

He then went on to correct the impression of Fidelis Oparaku who said, “This is revealing, so Legislators only suggest a project, and the ministry takes it up from there.

“That is not even correct. We don’t even suggest. We lobby for projects to be cited in our Constituency. It is not a right. It’s a privilege. We don’t control funds, or the contractors. The ministry does. Yet, this Tracka NG is here barking up the wrong tree.

But many people disagreed with the senator. Akande Abdulrasheed wrote, Senator, Tracka NG is just trying to make common sense. An update on a project you nominated for the benefit of your constituency only shows the quality of your representation. Perhaps, they are calling you to task on your oversight duty. So stop complaining.

Salami Fatai’ Ogrin pointed out that the Senator was not accused of anything by Tracka. “Can someone nominate a project and not know its status? Besides its just a follow up and not an accusation I guess.”

Ocholi Moses was convinced by the senator’s rant. “I received NO PENNY for any project” doesn’t cut it for me. You nominated the project on behalf of your constituents. “Common sense” demands that you see to its execution in the interest of your people. There is nothing wrong with Tracka NG asking a representative of the people for updates.

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