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Saturday, July 23, 2016

Mimiko’s rice distribution deceptive, fraudulent –Akeredolu

One of the governorship aspirants on the platform of the All Progressives Congress in Ondo State, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu, has said that the distribution of rice to the poverty-striken people of the state by Governor Olusegun Mimiko was meant to celebrate his administration’s deceit, debauchery and systematic swindling of the people for eight years.

Akeredolu said the distribution of rice by Mimiko polling unit by polling unit a few months to the next governorship election in the state was nothing, but an act of electoral fraud.

The former President of Nigerian Bar Association asked the governor to pay workers’ salaries, instead of deceiving them with paltry rice that could not feed them for a day.
The governorship aspirant, who spoke in a statement by his media office on Thursday, said Mimiko’s decision to distribute “such paltry food reduces the people to a pitiable state of beggary.”

Akeredolu said, “It is unfortunate that the Ondo State governor is now embarking on a grandiose charade designed to deceive the people. This is a government that has failed to meet its primary obligation. This is a government that has not paid public servants for six months.”

He said there was no justification for the distribution of the “so-called Igbe-Ayo rice at the period the state “is preparing for governorship election and at the time the state is reeling under heavy debt burden. The state debt burden is now in the region of N85bn or more.”

Akeredolu said, “What then is the justification of sharing of food if the government cannot meet its primary obligation? Our people are not asking for food from any government. What they are simply asking for is a responsible government, which is currently lacking in the state.”

But Mimiko described Akeredolu’s claim as a laughable. He said the distribution of Igbe Ayo rice was necessitated by the rise in the prices of foodstuffs.
According to him, the rice was distributed to the people to cushion the effect of current economic reality on them.

Mimiko, who spoke through his Special Adviser on Digital Media, Mr. John Paul Akinduro, said he was not surprised the people expected to exhibit deep reasoning could come up with laughable allegation of deception and debauchery about a programme necessitated by obvious development.

He said, “We ask them to say what is deceptive in the Eto Igbe Ayo? Is it that the food items being distributed are not needed by families groaning under the killing economic realities of the last one year? Or are they insinuating that the beneficiaries are not real citizens of Ondo State? We cannot help but wonder!

“As for the allegation of debauchery, we ask: is it the government that is indulging in excessive sensual pleasure by giving needed succour to the people or the people whose lot has nosedived in recent times? Aketi and the other APC opponents of this welfare intervention should provide answers. Or is it the promised, yet to be fulfilled, a meal a day programme of the APC what they meant to categorise as deceptive and an exercise in debauchery?”

This is just as some women groups hailed Mimiko for the initiative.
The Secretary, Association of Women Plank Merchants in Akoko, Mrs. Janet Ijaduade, said the distribution of the food showed that Mimiko was a caring governor.
She said, “Mimiko had demonstrated his love and respect for women since he assumed office. When he insisted he was going to give us befitting markets to trade, we thought it was a fluke until Mother and Child came and now the palliative.”

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