Ekiti 2018: PDP, Fayemi lock horns over state’s debts

The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Ekiti State has shifted the blame of the inability of the state governor, Ayodele Fayose, to meet up with payment of salaries to the huge debts incurred by the Kayode Fayemi’s last administration.

Fayemi, the candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC) in the forthcoming governorship election, was governor between 2010 to 2014 – the period which PDP accused him of plunging the state into heavy indebtedness.

The PDP chairman, Gboyega Oguntuase, who made the accusation on Sunday, pointed out that repayment of the debts has gulped the state’s funds of about N35.34 billion in servicing of the debts and deductions from statutory allocations.

While indicating that 40 percent of the state accruals went into servicing debts, Oguntuase detailed that between October to December 2014, the state’s allocations had N1.71 billion deducted to service the debts.

“In 2015, the sum of N7.85 billion was deducted from our allocations. In 2016, it was N11.30 billion, in 2017, it was N12.12 billion and from January to May this year, the sum of N4.94 billion has been deducted,” the PDP chief added.

Though, he said the Fayose-led government had successfully repaid a credit incurred by Fayemi for commercial agriculture purpose, he however, said the state still have other repayments until 2036.

Apparently linking the indebtedness to the paucity of fund facing the state, Oguntuase said, “We wouldn’t be owing workers’ salaries and more welfare programmes and projects would have been executed by the Ayodele Fayose administration.”

Suggesting that Fayemi failed to deliver on projects which credits were accessed, Oguntuase pointed out that “we all know the N25 billion they borrowed from the Capital Market to finance some projects, but where are the projects? They never built any Governor’s Office.

“They did not build a new Ojaba Market, they did not complete their event centre. Even the state pavilion was not fully completed,” he added.

But dismissing the accusation of PDP, Fayemi said contrary to Oguntuase’s claim, it was Fayose who burdened the state with huge debts.

Speaking through his campaign Media Director, Wole Olujobi, the former governor said figures from the Debts Management Office puts the debts taken by Fayose alone in the last three years totalled N56 billion – a figure he said was far above the N25 billion facility he took while administering the state.

“Again, we admit that Fayemi borrowed N25 billion to be defrayed within seven years and records are there in the Debts Management Office that Fayemi paid back N14.5 billion of the debts, leaving the balance of N10.5 billion before he left office on October 16, 2014,” he said.

Fayemi who insisted that he delivered projects which he obtained the credit facility for, accused Fayose of plunging the state into huge indebtedness and should be held responsible for failure to pay salaries.

He said, “All the projects that benefitted from the bond are verifiable. They are the roads constructed across the state, schools and hospital rehabilitation, world standard Ikogosi Resort that has again been looted, Ire Burnt Bricks Company, Igbemo Asphalt Plant, water projects, new Government House, Pavilion, Civic Centre that Fayose has abandoned, among several others.

“If the official debt figure were as stated above, how did they come about N35.34 billion to service the debt of N10.5 billion?

“Fayose was secretly collecting N1.3 billion Budget Support Fund for 14 months to pay salary without telling workers that he was collecting the money on their behalf to pay salary.

“He diverted all to self-serving projects, leaving workers without salaries for between six and 10 months, including failure to pay pensioners.”

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