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Thursday, July 21, 2016

Mimiko, APC chieftain disagree over Ondo finances

A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress and member of the party’s Board of Trustees, Chief Jamiu Ekungba, has alleged that the Dr. Olusegun Mimiko-led state government cannot account for about N400bn received from the Federation Government.

A statement by Ekungba, on Wednesday, said there was nothing to show for the huge financial allocations that accrued to Ondo State in the last seven and a half years.

He said, “Ondo State has, in the last seven and a half years, collected over N600bn from the federation account but we cannot, in all sincerity, see tangible development that is reflective of the huge receipts.”

However, Mimiko dismissed the allegation by the politician, who is eyeing the Alagbaka Government House, and described the allegation as a figment of the imagination of Ekungba.

Mimiko, who spoke through his Commissioner for Information, Mr. Kayode Akinmade, said no right-thinking person would take Ekungba seriously.

He said, “It has become the stock-in-trade for APC politicians to want to pull Governor Mimiko down by all means. This is one of their outbursts to carry out their plans but we are undaunted.”

Ekungba, an accountant and former banker, alleged that the incumbent governor has run the state aground.
The Ondo State governorship election comes up on November 26, 2016.

Ekungba said, “I have records that show that Ondo State has collected over N600bn under this administration. They claimed that they are paying N4bn as monthly wage bill. In 84 months that they are going to be in office, the total wage would have cost N336bn.
“That gives us a balance of N264bn. Add that to what would have been received in forms of loans, bonds, Internal Generated Revenue and other sources, you are going to have something in the region of N400bn.

“Of course, the government still has about seven months to stay in office to collect more money even as it is owing workers about six-month salary arrears. The economy of the state is in deep trouble because of the profligacy of a governor that met over N36bn in the coffers at his inauguration.”

The APC chief also accused the state government of squandering many opportunities to develop the state through the pursuit of parochial interests and lack of genuine commitment to the welfare of the people.

Ekungba said, “A case in point is the relocation of the multi-billion naira Dangote Refinery from Ondo to Lagos. The project, which is coming on stream very soon with all the socio-economic benefits, was initially located in Ondo, but the Mimiko administration allowed that great project to slip away.”

But Akinmade described Ekungba as someone looking for relevance.
“We know he has never been in government, so, he does not know how a government is run. We have very clean financial records that are audited and published yearly and we have over 700 projects that have been completed and delivered to our people. Their plan to run our governor down will fail.”

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