The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Dr Kayode Fayemi, has described as “laughable, but ridiculous” the released white paper on the panel set up by Governor Ayo Fayose to investigate the finances of the state between 2010 and 2014 which barred him and his former Commissioner for Finance, Mr. Dapo Kolawole, from holding a public office in the state for 10 years.
In a statement on Monday from his Media Office, Fayemi stated that the verdict was a pre-meditated, crude and ignoble path towards hitting his perceived political foe.
“The attention of the Media Office of the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Dr Kayode Fayemi, has been drawn to the pre-meditated verdict of the Ekiti State Government, as contained in the white paper submitted by the panel set up by Governor Ayo Fayose to investigate the finances of the state between 2010 and 2014.
“While we believe it is part of the responsibilities of the state administration to look into the finances of the state at any point in time, we are also of the belief that such must be done in a very responsible manner devoid of prejudice, witch-hunting and a calculated attempt to victimise a citizen.
“In this particular case, the entire process is discredited right from the beginning, as the only agenda of the panel was to rubbish Dr Kayode Fayemi’s public service record.
“One is therefore not surprised at the recommendations of the White Paper: It only goes to confirm our initial position that the panel was compromised right from inception and targeted against Dr Fayemi.
According to the former Ekiti State Governor, “In his desperation, Governor Fayose chose the crude and ignoble path towards hitting a perceived political foe.
“In the process, they ignored the rule of law and behaved as if the court does not matter, thus making their actions subjudice to the court.
“Fayose was however misguided into believing that he could pass a death sentence on Dr Fayemi’s public service with the white paper. This is not only laughable, but ridiculous, as neither Governor Fayose nor his paid agents has the power to bar anyone from political participation.
“The entire process and the character personae involved are discredited and since it is impossible to build something on nothing, legally speaking, their recommendation is not only null and void, it is ultra vires.
“We urge the teeming supporters of Dr Fayemi, the good people of Ekiti State and the general public not to be disturbed by the development. It is simply another act of illegality, from an administration that has elevated political debauchery to state craft.
“It shall not stand. It is nothing but a joke taken too far, perhaps joke of the century.
An Ekiti Judicial Commission of Inquiry had indicted Fayemi and one of his commissioners over alleged mismanagement of the state’s finances between October 2010 and 2014.
The panel was headed by Justice Silas Oyewole (rtd).
The report declared them “as unfit to hold any public office in the state.”
The Judicial Commission of Inquiry set up by Ekiti State Government to look into the financial transactions of the state under the administration of Dr. Fayemi had said that the former governor must refund a sum of N2.75 billion allocated from the N25 billion bond obtained by the government for the execution of contract for the construction of Ultra-Modern market in Ado Ekiti, which was never executed.
The commission of inquiry also said that the contractor in respect of the furnishing of the government house built by the Fayemi’s administration should be made to refund a sum of N324.8 million, noting that the contract should not have been more than N280 million..
The panel said it found out that KITWOOD Nigeria Limited to which the furnishing contract of over N600 million was awarded had no traceable address and that “the address on the Letter of Award is a virgin land at opposite the new Central Bank along new Iyin Road, Ado Ekiti.
These and several other revelations were made known when the commission of inquiry submitted its report to the State Governor, Fayose.
On the purchase of vehicles, the panel said “claim by Coscharis Motors that it supplied 235 and/or 250 vehicles was fraudulent and that fraught with so many contradictions.
“That Coscharis Motors supplied some vehicles outside Ekiti State especially, at Ibadan Liaison office when Ekiti State Government does not have a Liaison office in Ibadan. In respect of this, seven vehicles were supplied outside the State and signed for by unknown persons.
That Coscharis Motors only supplied 219 vehicles to the Ekiti State government and that 17 Joylong Buses were supplied to the Ekiti State Government as gift but later carted away.”
On the controversial N852.9 State Universal Education Board (SUBEB) fund, the commission said it was clear that the Government of Dr Fayemi hoodwinked the federal government into paying its own matching grant by obtaining N852, 936,783.12 loan from Access Bank on November 25, 2013 without perfecting documentation in respect of the loan, thereby flouting the provisions of Section 11(2) of the UBEC Act, 2004.