Oyo State Governor, Oluseyi Makinde has revealed that his predecessor, Abiola Ajimobi, withdrew N5.2 billion three weeks to his handing over, and spent all but N19,000 as at the time he (Makinde) assumed office on May 29, 2019.
The governor made this revelation on a live programme of the Oyo State Broadcasting Corporation, tagged ‘Live chat with GSM, a quarterly session with the Oyo State Governor’.
He said that Ajimobi’s 8-year-tenure was characterized by corruption, including budget padding, mismanagement of funds, inflation of contracts’ fees, lopsidedness in projects management, among others.
Speaking on the state of finances in the state, he said “If I should talk about the finances of Oyo State as at the time we came on board, some people will not be able to walk on the streets. Up till date, we have not bought vehicles for the office holders.
“If we are to buy official vehicles for myself and other office holders, we will not spend less than N3 billion and we cannot afford that now. Up till today, I am still using my personal cars in office. Our priority is to the people. We prioritise what we can do to the people who gave the opportunity to serve them.
“On May 6, 2019, three weeks to take over, the last administration withdrew N5.2 billion and spent it to remain N19, 000 by May 29. Soon, those involved will have to explain how they spent the money to the people.
“When I resumed, I was scared. The government was running over 60 banks accounts. So I asked for all the balances of the accounts. A particular account has N300 million, and another has N20 million. I asked the accountant general to prune the accounts down and put all the money in one account and which came to about N6 billion”.
“When we assumed office, some people came to me and said that this is how they share money. I said don’t share the money to me. Let us use it to better the lives of the people of the state. IGR has gone up a bit because we have blocked loopholes.
Speaking on the payment of the new minimum wage, Makinde disclosed that he has set up a committee to engage labour adding, “If we are honest and open, everything will be okay and fine. I can assure you that it is a new thinking between the government and labour and other stakeholders that will hinge on development”.
He also promised that the civil servants wrongly sacked by the last administration would soon resume work in the state, saying that the head of service was finalising necessary procedures on it.
Also speaking on waste management, he said that the withdrawal of the license from the waste management company was due to the fact that the company was holding the government to ransom, and that there is a need to overhaul the process of waste management and disposal.
He declared that a new architecture of waste management would soon be unfolded in the state, assuring that soon the state would overcome challenges coming from waste management.
Regarding Oke-Ogun television, the governor disclosed that N300m had been allocated to the project in the budget of 2020, assuring the residents of the region that Oke-Ogun television will become functional on or before July 2020. He also promised the people of the area that more will be done to develop the Oke-Ogun area.
Reacting to street trading, he pointed out point blank that street trading cannot be eradicated in the state for now, explaining, “We cannot eradicate street trading overnight because it is the means of livelihood for some people.
“Some women use whatever they get from street trading to sponsor their children in school up to the university. For us to send people out of the street, then we must provide alternatives that will be conducive for them to operate. These alternatives must have necessary infrastructure. This is what we have started to do around Ojoo. We have traveled abroad. They did not get to where they are in one day. Things should be organised and it takes careful planning and implementation”.
Governor Makinde, who berated the Senator Ajimobi-led administration for not completing the Orita Challenge-Akala Road linking Apata, said that his administration would complete it to ease traffic around the area of Ibadan, assuring further that more access roads would be provided in the state capital.
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