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Sunday, January 8, 2017

Governor Fayose In Trouble Again For Alleged Diversion Of N8.877bn

The Governor of Ekiti State,  Ayo Fayose may have run into fresh trouble with Federal Government after it was found that he collected the sum of N8.877 billion from the N388.304 billion released to 35 states as refunds from over-deductions on London-Paris Club loans but only paid one out of
the eight-month salary arrears he owed workers in the state.

According to reports, Fayose was also said to have paid a curious 13th month salary as bonus while the arrears of seven-month salaries owed the workers were left unpaid. Seriously?

A source in the Presidency, who spoke in confidence with The Nation, said President Muhammadu Buhari has lived up to his pledge to ease salary crises in all the states by releasing N388.304 billion to 35 states but many of the states failed to abide by the agreement they had with the President that they would give preference to settling arrears of workers’ salaries.

The Presidency source said: “The agreement between the Federal Government and the state governors was very clear.

“While 50 per cent of the amount released was to be used to offset outstanding salary and pension arrears, the remaining 50 per cent would be used for the payment of other obligations.

“Some governors have however reneged on this agreement.

“Security reports available to the Presidency showed that Governor Ayodele Fayose paid only one month out of eight-month salary arrears.

“The same governor went ahead to pay a curious 13-month salary to Ekiti workers. Yet, he got N8.877 billion refund.

“Instead of accounting for what he used the loan refund for, he has the temerity to attack the Federal Government on hardship in the country.

“The relevant agencies are monitoring development in Ekiti and some states.”

Reacting to the allegation on the telephone yesterday, Ekiti State Commissioner for Finance, Toyin Ojo, admitted that the state got N8.8 billion from the Paris Club refunds.

But he said that the state’s share of the money was only N5.3 billion, which he said could barely pay one month out of the arrears of salaries owed the civil servants in the state.

According to him, the wage bill for a month stands at N5.2 billion.

He also said that workers in the local government sector could only get one month from the arrears of salaries owed them.

The Federal Government had released the sum of N388.304 billion out of N522.74 billion

to 35 states as refunds of over-deductions on London-Paris Club loans.

Topping the list of states with the hugest reimbursements are states controlled by the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), contrary to their claims that they were being financially oppressed by the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.

The biggest earners include Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Rivers, Delta, Katsina, Kaduna, Lagos, Imo, Jigawa, Borno, Niger, Bauchi and Benue states.

But the reimbursement profile has shown that some governors fed their states with wrong figures of the sums given to them.

Investigation conducted by our correspondent revealed that 35 of the 36 states benefitted from the refunds of N388.304 billion.

Although most of the governors have begged the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, not to make the list of reimbursements public, The Nation was able to source the breakdown of the reimbursements exclusively.

The document indicated that all the 35 states were credited with their shares of the N388.304 billion as at December 27, 2016.

Our correspondent obtained the names of the bank, the account and the account numbers where each state’s share was remitted.

Only Kano State and the FCT have so far not benefitted from the reimbursements.

According to the list, Kwara State got two types of refund totaling more than N9.188 billion.

Kwara’s shares include N5,415,167,236.97 refund to the state government and N3,773,082,953.54 for its 16 local government areas.

Findings also confirmed that Ondo was only paid 50 per cent of its refunds (N6,513,392,932.28) because of leadership change in the state, which will soon lead to the inauguration of Chief Rotimi Akeredolu as the new governor.

A breakdown of the list of top beneficiaries of the refunds is as follows: 


The document said: “Ondo payment represents 50 per cent of the refund due to transition of leadership in the state. Further instructions are being awaited on balance payment.

“Adamawa, Kwara 22b on the list, Oyo and Taraba payments represent the portions due to the respective local governments.”

But the Presidency was uncomfortable with the attitude of some state governors to the management of the refunds.

Responding to a question, another source in government said: “It is unfortunate that some state governors under-declared the refunds made to them. Some of them were also discovered to be giving spurious analysis in order to cover up the actual figures."
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