Osun debt profile: Oyetola will be in trouble if Adeleke drags him to EFCC, says Aregbesola

Osun debt profile: Oyetola will be in trouble if Adeleke drags him to EFCC, says Aregbesola

..as PDP knocks ex-Gov, hails Adeleke


The raging controversy surrounding the debt profile of Osun State, on Saturday, took a new twist as a former governor of the state, Rauf Aregbesola, blamed his successor, Gboyega Oyetola for the state’s huge indebtedness.

While reacting to the development though his media aide, Sola Fasure, Aregbesola, the incumbent Minister of Interior, said the administration of Oyetola would be in problems should the government of Ademola Adeleke decides to drag him before the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC).

He, however, explained what loans his administration took and those that had been liquidated.

Asking Adeleke and Oyetola to count him out of their bickerings over the state loans, Aregbesola stated that Osun Accountant-General should be in a better position to give the true particulars of the indebtedness of the state.

The administration of Governor Adeleke had accused Oyetola of leaving behind N407.32billion debt for the state and claimed that there was no significant project the former governor used the loans for.

Reacting, Oyetola’s spokesperson, Ismail Omipidan, had argued that Aregbesola incurred the loans.

But, Aregbesola, while confirming that he took loans, said the two major ones he took had been liquidated while “the other ones are long-term concessional facilities (given to the state) by the Federal Government” with minimal monthly deductions.

Aregbesola said, “I will suggest that you look at all the loans and get to the Accountant-General of the state at Abere. I think the Accountant-General or the Permanent Secretary (Finance) would have better information because it is the Accountant-General that raised a memo based on the query of the governor.

“The Accountant-General, in reply to the query of the Governor, stated the condition of the loans and the loans that are outstanding. He is the most knowledgeable about the loans by the state as the custodian of the account of the state. They should count Aregbesola out of it.”

Aregbesola said the loans his government got had been liquidated, saying “was it Aregbesola that took a loan of N18 billion after he lost the election? The two major loans Aregbesola took have been liquidated. They were the Sukkuk loan and the other ones were long-term concessionary facilities by the Federal Government which have a long span repayment terms. The deductions are minimal and they are not deductions that will infringe on finances of the state. The two major loans taken by Aregbesola have been liquidated.”

“The matter is between the Adeleke and Oyetola administrations because the Aregbesola debts have been liquidated. It was not Aregbesola that took the N18 billion loan that was taken after the election. Oyetola took some other loans, including salary support from the Federal Government.

“They caused the problem for themselves. If they had set up a transition committee and if they had cooperated well with the incoming governor after they had lost election, there would have been a smooth change of government.

“They would have compared notes and there would be no rancour. But he was busy sowing mines on the path of the incoming governor, creating problems for him, and spending money with reckless abandon. What did he do with N18 billion? Now the new government is fighting back. If the new government takes the matter up to the EFCC, there would be problems for the Oyetola administration.

Oyetola and Aregbesola
Oyetola and Aregbesola

“They should count Aregbesola out of their problems because out of the three loans he took, two have been liquidated. It is only the long-term debt that is remaining and only the Accountant-General can give us the status of the loan because it is no longer what it was because deductions are being made,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Osun State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has accused Oyetola of deceitful conduct on his handling of the state’s debt profile, and commended Adeleke for his transparency and accountability in the management of state affairs.

Reacting to the address of the Governor on the state’s debt profile, Osun State PDP caretaker Chairman, Dr Akindele Adekunle described the debt question as “a subject of secrecy for so long with attendant negative consequences on the state finance, investors’ perception and general well being of Osun people. The evil the APC was covering up is now in public domain.

“Osun people genuinely appreciate His Excellency, Governor Adeleke for opening the state books for all to see. It takes courage and commitment for a leader to act the way the People’s Governor acted. The state feels the passion and the love he has for the good people of Osun as well as his readiness to deliver on his five point agenda despite the financial constraints.

“Certain realities should be clearly spelt out. First is that former Governor Gboyega Oyetola is an originator of financial and misgovenance rot in Osun state. From eight years as Chief of Staff to a calamitous one term rule, Mr Oyetola bastardised the state economy, deepened the state’s debt overhang, hid financial mess under bogus data, supervised the plundering of state assets, presided over huge revenue robbery regime and coordinated extensive nest of solid mineral bandits. He bears sole responsibility for the debt crisis.

“Secondly, unfolding development confirmed the APC as the worst thing to ever happened to Osun state. For a state to be so deeply indebted and the facts are not known to the citizens is a manifestation of anti-people, inhuman leadership typified by Mr Oyetola. Worst still, the state is still grossly under-developed despite the over N400 billion debt. The lack of remorse and the public shamelessness among Mr Oyetola and his team are nauseating. This calls for permanent public repudiation of APC and all her functionaries in Osun politics.

“And more importantly, we want to express the annoyance of Osun people on the defence of Mr Oyetola and his team. Passing the bucks, avoiding responsibility, distorting debt profile and forging ahead with deceitful propaganda further anger Osun people. Mr Oyetola should at the lowest level tender public apology for his era of locust and surrender himself for accountability trial.

“We want to assure Osun people that Governor Adeleke is not weakened in his resolve to deliver on his five point agenda. Our administration has mapped out extensive plans to deliver on good governance which are currently under implementation. Recent disclosures are part of the twin agenda to clean up the state finance and commence sustainable governance. Our Governor is fulfilling his pledge to run an open government which is the foundation for achieving good governance.

“Those culpable in the pillaging of our state will have their days before the law,” the statement noted.


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