The immediate past governor of Ekiti State, Mr. Kayode Fayemi, today debunked claims of financial recklessness leveled against his administration, saying that the state is indebted to the tune of N36.317 billion as at October 15, 2014, when he left office, against an indebtedness of N57 billion.
Reacting to allegations by the governor, Mr. Ayo Fayose, who put the state’s debt profile at N57 billion, Fayemi said the total loan package comprises N28.485 billion internal loan and N7.83 billion foreign loans incurred by previous government since the days of the old Ondo State.
He said Ekiti State’s internal loan include inherited loans from previous government and outstanding balance (debt) of the bond taken at the capital market.
In spite of this, Fayemi stated that the Federal Government is owing the state the sum of N17.711 billion, which include N10.839 billion due from construction of federal roads; N4.012 billion being refund on Paris Club and N2.859 billion, being amount due on ecological projects.
According to him, if the Federal Government would graciously effect part of this payment, the debt profile of the state would have been greatly reduced.
Fayemi said, “It is our belief that Fayose was hasty in making a pronouncement on the state of the state’s finances and other matters without first going through the handing over note which contains explicit details of government transactions and financial situation. Nothing can be more mischievous and irresponsible than this.
“While Fayose alleged that the state account was in red, the state bank balances as at October 15th stood at N1.931 billion. This comprised N1.464 billion (state account) and N466.934 million (local government account). Also the Bond Sinking Fund Account balance as at September stood at N3.019 billion.
“Nothing could be farther from the truth than Mr. Fayose’s allegation that none of the MDA’s account had up to N1 million. For instance, the Ministry of Agriculture’s account is in the excess of N90 million, while the MDG account has close to N1 billion.
“There is no responsible leader in Nigeria today that will not acknowledge the poor state of the country’s economy, a development that has made it difficult for the Federal Government to meet its obligations to the federating states. In the last two years, states on many occasions have had to leave the monthly FAAC meetings empty handed, like they did last week. This is in addition to a huge reduction in the amount given to the states.
In his reaction to ex-governor Fayemi’s position on the state’s debt profile, the Special Assistant to Governor Fayose on Information and Social Media, Mr Lere Olayinka said; ‘’We are not going to engage in exchange of words with those who served in the immediate past government because it is obvious that they are only being clever by half.
‘’Most importantly, joining issues with Ex-Governor Kayode Fayemi and his wounded men will not bring food to the tables of Ekiti people.
‘’However, for the sake of clarity, it is important to state, once again that outstanding sum of N21.2bn was left from the bond taken from Bond Capital market and Agric Loan, N15.5bn from loans taken from various banks, N3.2bn as unpaid workers salary for two months, N2.4bn unremitted monthly deductions from workers salary for four months, N700m as unpaid subventions to parastatals and tertiary institutions, N400m as unpaid workers leave bonus, N3.2bn as unpaid pensions and gratuities (despite that the fund was deducted from Local Councils monthly allocation), N850m as unremitted withholding taxes and other deductions.
‘’As at the time we were compiling our report, over N10bn was discovered as indebtedness to contractors and more discoveries are still being made because projects were awarded at highly exorbitant cost, with roads awarded at over N1bn per kilometre.
‘’It is therefore another lie taken too far for anyone who worked with the immediate past government to have claimed that N36.31billion was left as debt