‘Aregbesola is not a liar’
Adeyinka Ajayi is the lawmaker representing Odo-Otin/Ifelodun/Boripe Federal Constituency, Osun State. He spoke on the challenges confronting Governor Rauf Aregbesola
Allegations of mismanagement of public funds against Aregbesola THE situation we found ourselves in Osun State is rather unfortunate because with the best of intention, planning and forward looking mechanisms that the governor has in place we found ourselves not being I control of those parameters that determine whether you are going concern or not.
That is not peculiar to Osun. It happened across the federation. The country is feeling the pain, so Osun is not an exception. But I dare say despite the fact that the whole nation is going through what it is going through now, Osun became high point because we have certain political elements that wanted to use unconstitutional and illegitimate means of getting what the Osun people do not want to give them, which is the mandate to govern them.
Investment on helicopter I will take that issue in Isolation but I am sure maybe in the course of the interview, we are going to address it in a more holistic manner. How much does a helicopter cost? It will not pay one-month salary in Osun, so is that mismanagement? But yes, you can argue that you take it as one aspect of management and then you can list 10, 15, 20 other items like that it can add up.
I will admit that if you are correct but that is not the case. You will not be able to cite two, three, four examples of issues that we call absolute and direct mismanagement.
The helicopters was bought for the security of the state, it is not a helicopter bought for the movement of the government officials. Ambiguous projects of Aregbesola I will not agree that the state government embarked on projects that are not directly relevant to the welfare of the people.
If you know the person of Ogbeni Aregbesola, he is absolutely and irrevocable committed to the welfare of the people of Osun. That is what he lives for.
That is what he preaches and that is what he is doing. The O’YES has become celebrated not only in Nigeria but also all over the world. Several governments in Nigeria copied that programme.
Why so? In an economy like Osun; it is a civil service state. We have over 35, 000 civil servants probably second to Lagos State. What are we doing with 35, 000 civil servants in a state like Osun? But that is where we have found ourselves.
The OYES was designed to keep some money in the economy of Osun. The people who were making money from Osun have their wherewithal and well being outside the state and the money was being siphoned, if I could use that word, out of Osun.
Governor Aregbesola thought of a way of trying to circulate funds within, in the hands of people who would not take the money out of Osun and that is where the idea of OYES came from, apart from the fact that it was a campaign promise that within 100 days in office we are going to employ so many number of people. So, we created an OYES that put N200m every month in the hands of people who will spend it on the economy of Osun. How the OYES will be a failure, I don’t understand.
We have so many graduates who are jobless but the OYES is designed to be like an entrepreneurial development programme. It is not supposed to be a job in itself.
It is supposed to be a way to help our youths; our graduates that the only way to survive is not to search for white-collar job. On the free meal to students, my question is are schools built for teachers or students? Schools are built to educate our children.
Schools are not built to create jobs for teachers. Yes! You are correct; the NLC suggested that we should stop the school-feeding project. If we stop the school feeding programme and the children stop coming to school what would you do? The feeding programme in Osun ensured that our school enrolment rate level because parents know that at least the children will get fed.
So, the parents do not have to worry about securing N300 or N400 to feed two or three kids because the children will be fed in the school.
If only for that reason the kids are coming to school and with that comes several benefits; the child will get education and the child will be taken off the street. Abandoned projects Don’t use the word abandoned because there is no project that is abandoned. Yes, the pace of the completion of the projects has slowed down.
The completion period will obviously require some extension because of the financial problem we found ourselves but the beauty of it is that they are social services, except the airport.
The airport is designed to feed itself ultimately. It is a commercial package. It is an infrastructure, yes, but it is designed to pay back the investment of government. If you don’t break the egg you cannot make an omelet.
The Osun State Government is breaking the omelet. Bail out for Osun For Osun State, some financial engineering outside of our resources are required.
If you call it bailout, yes! Aregbesola accused of lying about accruable revenue to the state People motives are their motives; their intentions are their intentions.
Most times it is better to be careful before you ascribe motive or intention to people because you may just be wrong. My understanding of the summit organised by the opposition party in Osun is more political than anything else.
I can tell you point blank that Mr. Governor is not a liar. The revenue allocation to Osun is not even subject to debate because it is published in the papers every month.
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