The Worse Is Over In Osun – Govt

The State Government of Osun has declared that the worse is over and there is end in sight for the financial crisis that had been strangulating governance in the state.

Commissioner for Information and Strategy in the State, Mr Adelani Baderinwa on Thursday said Osun has moved far away from Egypt and moving towards economic prosperity which will enhance governance.

Baderinwa who spoke on a television programme on the report of a Financial Derivatives Company (FDC) that ranked Osun as the second wealthiest state in Nigeria in 2017, stated that Governor Rauf Aregbesola has invested heavily in the economy of the state in terms of infrastructure and social intervention.

Besides, Baderinwa said the price of crude oil has been improving which will bring more money to the cover of the federation and the state in return.

He described the FDC report as genuine and credible, maintaining that it is the manifestation of delivery of good governance by the Aregbesola’s administration.

According to Baderinwa, the report attested to the fact that Aregbesola has been able to affect the people positively even in the face of financial quagmire.

Baderinwa said: “I want to believe and say that, by the grace of God, the worse is over in the state of Osun. We have moved far way from Egypt in terms of economic development. We are moving towards economic prosperity in the state, courtesy of Aregbesola’s ingenuity.

“Nigeria has moved out of recession and the price of crude oil is increasing. More money would into the account of the federation and the state in returns.”

Speaking on the FDC report, Baderinwa said: “Whatever anybody might say, there are some reasonable people out there that appreciate Aregbesola’s financial engineering system; his judicious management of the meager resources of the state.

“The report is genuine and credible. It reflects the fact that Aregbesola has been able to affect the people positively in the face of financial crisis.”

On the 2018 governorship election, Baderinwa expressed his optimism that the people of the state would not elect anybody that will stall the development of the state, urging the people to be conscious of governorship aspirants who want to manipulate them into taking wrong decision.

“Osun people acknowledge and appreciate Aregbesola’s social programmes like O’ MEAL, OYES, O REHAB, O’ Ambulance and thus they would want the programmes to continue. So, they will be mindful of who they want to elect; they will not elect anybody that will draw the state back.”

Celebrating Aregbesola’s Success, Achievements

By Adelani Baderinwa

There is no gainsaying the fact that the State of Osun has been witnessing sparkling infrastructural and socio-economic development since Ogbeni Rauf Adesoji Aregbesola took over the mantle of leadership on November 27th, 2010. The all round progress and transformation of the state is incontestable.

In all ramifications, Aregbesola has delivered the dividends of democracy to every household in the state with either the infrastructure projects or the social security programmes.

The unprecedented development of the state does not just happen by accident: It is a well thought-out programme embedded in the green book titled ‘My Pact with the People of Osun, in which we have the Six Integral Action Plan for the delivery of good governance. The action plans are: Banish Hunger, Banish Poverty, Banish Unemployment, Promote Healthy Living, Promote Functional Education, Promote Communal Peace and Progress.

Pertinently, the seven years anniversary of Aregbesola’s administration calls for reminiscences: before his coming, there was dearth of infrastructural development in the state. Osun was stagnant; hunger and poverty was ravaging the state, security was at its lowest ebb, unemployment rate was high for the state and there was absence of social security for the citizenry.

But Aregbesola’s emergence restored hope for a new Osun. Aregbesola redefined governance and offered exemplary quality leadership. He fought poverty, stagnation, lack of political will to build strong foundation for good governance. The 14th President of the Philippines, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo said in her speech:  ”We have to be bold in our national ambitions. First, we must win the fight against poverty within the next decade. Second, we must improve moral standards in government and society to provide a strong foundation for good governance. Third, we must change the character of our politics to promote fertile ground for reforms.”

In his first 100 days in office, Aregbesola rolled out Osun Youth Empowerment Scheme (OYES) which absolved 20, 000 unemployed youths for two years, and another set of 20, 000 youths, rounding the figure to 40, 000. Each OYES cadet earned N10, 000 monthly. In every month, for each set of the OYES, a whopping N200million goes into circulation, reshaping the economy of the state.

Aregbesola is leaving an indelible footprint in every aspect of his governance. The achievements recorded in education sector and infrastructure development are remarkable and unprecedented. With the seven years of Aregbesola’s noble reign, more than 900km roads have been constructed. This include the dualisation of Gbongan-Akoda 30km road which hosts the beautiful Bisi Akande trumpet bridge at Gbongan junction, the 320.39km inter-city road development, the 90.505 intra-city roads development and the 17.40km Oba Adesoji Aderemi road, 40km Dualisation of Osogbo-Ikirun-Ila-Odo-KWSB and 2.80km Olaiya-Itaolokan road projects.

On education, Aregbesola’s success could not be overemphasised. The current administration has aggressively embarked on the construction of state-of-the-art 100 Elementary Schools, 50 Middle Schools and 20 High Schools. More than 20 Elementary Schools, 22 Middle Schools and 5 High Schools have been commissioned while the High Schools in Iwo and Fakunle Unity High School in Osogbo have been completed and ready for commission.

Aregbesola’s government repackaged Osun Free School Feeding Programme now known as O’ MEAL. More than 262,000 elementary 1-4 pupils in all public schools in the state are being fed with healthy and nutritious food and fruits. The programme drastically increased the enrolment of pupils in the public schools. It has also earned Osun numerous national and international accolades and awards.

Of course, the Osun Ambulance Service is another successful strategic social intervention programme for humanity service. There is no how you will assess Aregbesola’s administration without giving thumb up on flood control. He has saved lives and properties from destruction and flood havoc through dredging of streams and rivers and channelisation of drainages.

Osogbo, the capital of Osun for the first time, now has a befitting look of a state capital. Osun and Osogbo specifically used to be a rustic environment but reverse is the case today. The environment is now clean. The Nelson Mandela Freedom Park was a filth to glitz for anybody that knew Ojurin before being transformed to an amazing aesthetics recreation centre. Ogbeni Aregbesola is crowning his achievement with the construction of MKO International Airport at Ido-Osun. Osun has never had it so good!

Ogbeni Aregbesola is a man with incontrovertible record of good governance in the State of Osun. I, like several others, in and out of Osun, acknowledge his achievements. No patriotic Osun indigene/resident will deny these blessings wrought on our state through Ogbeni’s fertile mind and creative hands. To think otherwise is insanity. Ogbeni is an enigmatic character well appreciated by the high and the mighty, even from faraway lands.

It is crystal clear that Aregbesola has raised the bar of governance in the state of Osun, getting a person to continue the development stride will be a herculean task going beyond pedestrian, sectional and nepotistic considerations. The best to do for the progress of the state is to make sure that a person that is going to succeed Aregbesola has passion for development like the governor.

The Aregbesola’s administration is already a success.

Baderinwa Charges Journalists on Balanced Sensitive Stories

Journalists as the fourth estate of the realm and watchdogs of the nation have been advised to always balance their stories when reporting sensitive issues.

The Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Adelani Baderinwa gave this charge while playing host to the Managing Director, Independence Newspaper, Mr. Adedamola Ogidan in his office.

The Commissioner said that, it was high time that journalists refrained from financial inducement and political influence while reporting, in order to protect the ethics and ethos of the profession.

Mr. Baderinwa eulogised the Management and Editorial Board of The Independent Newspaper for a virile, informative and balanced reports which are the bedrock of reasonable journalism. He took time to explain the giant strides of Ogbeni Aregbesola’s administration in the State of Osun which he ascribed to be a product of prudent financial management which led to the payment of modulated salaries which will soon be corrected immediately the financial resources of the State improves.
The Commissioner enjoined the Management and Editorial board of the Independent newspaper to give positive, un-biased reports about the State of Osun in order to erase the wrong notions that might have been planted in some people.

Earlier , the Managing Director, the Independent newspaper, Mr. Adedamola Ogidan said that, the visit to the Commissioner and Management of the State of Osun Ministry of Information and Strategy was borne out of the need to inform stakeholders of the emergence of The Independent newspaper from the hitherto nomenclature of the Daily Independent. He also said that, the State of Osun is one of the States the newspaper believes in, especially in the areas of physical and human development coupled with the relative peace that pervades the State. Mr. Ogidan pledged the commitment of his media outfit to objective, unbiased and balanced reports about the State of Osun and all other States in the country.

Osun’ll No Longer Rely On Fed Allocation in Five Years Time – Commissioner

Osun state government has said that it has put in place policies, programmes and infrastructure that will totally liberate the state from the shackles of the federal allocation which has for sometimes been deciding the progress or otherwise of majority of the states in Nigeria.

Foundation for economic prosperity, according to the government, was gradually being built in Osun and was working assiduously to attain a glorious height economically.

The state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Adelani Baderinwa stated this on Sunday while addressing members of a socio-political organization, the Young Mandate Group in Osogbo.

Baderinwa said Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s administration has provided and invested heavily on profitable and lasting infrastructure that has been enhancing and continue to uplift the economy of the state.

He maintained that good infrastructure is the bedrock of socio-economic development, explaining that the massive road construction put in place by Aregbesola’s administration have been connecting people, drive commerce and maintain global competitiveness.

Baderinwa noted that the road construction would in no time reduce costs in many economic sectors in the state by providing better accessibility to markets, increasing employment, bringing in foreign investment and improving global presence in the state.

The commissioner said Aregbesola has laid solid foundation for economic development of the state and his efforts have been yielding positive result with the recent agreement of Turkish government to partner Osun on trade, commerce and industrial revolution.

Baderinwa stated that the Turkish government has agreed to support the state at completing the MKO Abiola International Airport in Ido-Osun, stating that the airport when completed will aid the state’s economy.

Aside the airport, Aregbesola said Osun economy will in no time receive boost when the $30.5million contract won by the Osun RLG/Adulawo Technology Company for the supply of Terrestrial Broadcast Set Top Boxes flows into the market.

Baderinwa noted that the 15-year-old moribund cocoa processing industry in Ede has been revived by the Aregbesola’s administration, disclosing that a Chinese company, Shanghai Golden Monkey Group was ready to invest N10billion into the economy of Osun state through cocoa processing and production.

The company, according to Baderinwa would have the capacity to provide 1,000 jobs for the unemployed youths in the state in the next two years when it begins full production.

According to the commissioner, aside road construction and investment in company, construction of markets by the Aregbesola’s administration has been aiding trade and commerce in the state, saying that new markets like Aje and Ayegbaju International markets have expanded economic activities.

Baderinwa submitted Aregbesola has laid foundation for economic development, stating that in the next five years the economy of the state would be sustainable and make the state independent of federal allocation.

The commissioner stated that Aregbesola’s administration recognized agriculture as a strong pillar of economy, hence his commitment to promoting agriculture and food security through intervention programmes like Osun Rural Enterprise and Agricultural Programme (O REAP) and Osun Rural Access and Mobility Project (O RAMP).

He said the O REAP and O RAMP programmes have afforded the farmers opportunity of getting the farm produce into the markets with ease with the provision of compact roads, curvet and bridges in all the villages across the state for smooth transportation.

 

Osun Is Now Economically Viable – Baderinwa

State of Osun Commissioner for Information, Mr Adelani Baderinwa has left the status of a civil service state which she used to be before the advent of Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s administration and is now an economically viable state.

He stated this on Wednesday while addressing members of the Mandate Women Group who paid him a courtesy visit in his office.

According to Baderinwa, Osun economy has improved, saying that the economic development of the state is evident with the establishment of companies and revival of industries and opening of bank branches across the state.

Baderinwa said it would amount to mischief for anybody to continue referring to Osun as a civil service state, maintaining that small and medium scale business, companies and industries are growing steadily in the state.

He stated that the state government through the Osun Micro Finance Agency and the Ministry of Commerce, Corporative and Investment were providing soft loans to traders and business owners in the state to strengthen their trades and businesses.

The commissioner disclosed that the state owned investment, the Osun Investment Company Limited (OSICOL) has recorded over 700% turn over in the last six years, saying that its fortune has grown from about 300million in 2011 to about 2.6billion in 2017.

Baderinwa added that the 15-year-old moribund Cocoa Processing Industry in Ede has been revived by the Aregbesola’s administration, disclosing that a Chinese company, Shanghai Golden Monkey Group was ready to invest N10billion into the economy of Osun state through cocoa processing and production.

The company, according to Baderinwa would have the capacity to provide 1,000 jobs for the unemployed youths in the state in the next two years when it begins full production.

It should also be stated, the Commissioner said that a computer manufacturing company, the Adulawo/RLG in Ilesa just won a $3.2million dollars contract from the NTA/NBC to produce the digital switch over boxes aside its production of telephones and other computer accessories which has positively rubbed on the state economy.

It is also on record that the volume of trade in the state has increased geometrically and the positive ripple effect will soon be felt by all indigenes and residents of the state.

He maintained that in spite of the economic hardship that crippled the finances of the state, agro-industries, small and medium scale enterprises survived and are booming in the state due to the friendly environment and encouraging economic policy of Aregbesola’s administration.

Osun Doctors Ultimatum: Govt Pleads For Understanding, Promises To Address Concerns

By Ismaeel Uthman

The government of the State of Osun has assured that it would address the issues surrounding the payment of salaries of Medical doctors in the state, just as it pleaded for their understanding of the plight of the government.

This is contained in a statement made by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Adelani Baderinwa in reaction to the threat by doctors in the state under the Nigeria Medical Association to downsize after 21-day ultimatum.

Noting that it is on record that doctors in Osun are perhaps the highest paid in the South-West states after Lagos, the government said it has done everything to ensure the standard was maintained for as long as the finances of government were in good shape.

The statement said, this was a sign that the administration of Aregbesola is very sensitive to health matters and would always treat the health workers very well, if not specially.

“Issues bothering on full payment of their salary should not degenerate to the level of downsizing because it has been demonstrated that other workers of the state who were being paid modulated salary would sure get their arrears when the state finances improve.

“Recently, the state government paid July and August 2015 salary arrears of the workers; so there is nothing to assume or suggest that the government would not pay arrears for the doctors.

“The government knows that other issues raised by the doctors during their agitations are secondary; the salary is their primary reason for their action. Primary health centres and other hospitals in the state are well-equipped.

“We sincerely urged the doctors to reason with the state government and understand the reality of the state finances. Governor Aregbesola’s administration is very responsive to the welfare of the general populace and the workers in the state”, the statement read.

Osun Commissioner For Information’s Mother Becomes Church Chief

By Ismaeel Uthman

All roads led to Ikirun, the headquarter of Ifelodun Local Government Council Area of the State of Osun on Sunday for the inauguration of Mrs Eunice Emiola Baderinwa, the mother of Osun Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Adelani Baderinwa as the Iya Ijo of the African Church, All Saints Parish, Oke-Iroko, Ikirun.

A thanksgiving programme was also held for Baderinwa for his appointment as a member of Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s cabinet.

The church was filled to capacity for the two-in-one programme as politicians, career officers, professionals, groups, friends and other well-wishers thronged the church to honour the commissioner and his family.

Mrs Eunice Baderinwa’s appointment, according to the Vicar-In-Charge of the Church, Canon S.S Fulani, was in recognition of her faithfulness, godliness, commitment to the church and services to God.

Fulani described Mrs Baderinwa as a calm, gentle and humble woman with Omoluabi virtues worthy of emulation by other church members.

Thanking God for his appointment, Lani Baderinwa said, his selection for the commissionership appointment was a manifestation of God’s favour in his life.

Baderinwa specifically thanked and appreciated the former governor of the State, Chief Adebisi Akande and the Akinrun of Ikirun, Oba Abdulrauf Olawale Adedeji for their support and positive disposition to his appointment.

The commissioner also thanked Aregbesola for counting him worthy of appointment among thousands of qualified people in the state, promising the Governor of his unalloyed loyalty, support, dedication and commitment to the projection and promotion of his administration.

Chief (Mrs) Eunice Baderinwa was born to the family of Late Chief David Adeyemo, Baba Ijo of Saviours African Church Cathedral Oke-Iba, Ikirun in 1935. Her Mother’s name was Late Mrs. Comfort Ajoke Abiola Adeyemo of Idi-Okuta Compound Oke- Iba, Ikirun.

Mrs Baderinwa was brought up by her step-mother, Chief Mrs. Kikelomo Abeo Adeyemo who introduced her to Kolanut business right from her childhood. She became prosperous in this business to the extent that “Kolanut Selling” reflects in her name “Olobide”. This line of trade took her to notable cities like Onitsha, Kano, Kaduna, Yauri, Sokoto e.t.c. Even, she traveled as far as Chad Republic, Cameroon and Niger Republic to sell Kolanuts. Due to this, her interactions with many ethnic groups made her multilingual and helped her so much in the business.

She got married to the Late Chief James Iyanda Abolanle Baderinwa of Babasale compound, Ikirun in 1954.

A devoted Christian and true follower of Jesus Christ, she is God-fearing, an epitome of unity and very hospitable in the family. She is always after the well-being and progress of all children in their family without discrimination.

Her assiduity and responsiveness to church programmes and activities earned her the “Iya Ijo” of the church.

Osun Govt Never Paid Ex-Office Holders N50m As Severance – Baderinwa

The State Government of Osun has denied paying N50m severance package to political office holders who served between November 2010 and November 2014, describing the allegation as malicious and false in entirety.

 

Commissioner for Information and Strategy in the state, Mr Adelani Baderinwa on Wednesday said the leader of the 2011/2012 pensioners group, Mr Omoniyi Ilesanmi who made the accusation was attempting to incite the people against the Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s administration.

 

Baderinwa who spoke on a private radio in Osogbo explained that the highest amount paid to two ex-political aides was N4 million while others received N3 million and N2.8 million a year ago, while he did not received a penny as salary or severance package.

 

He explained that the severance allowance paid was in line with Section 4 (1) and (2) Schedule (B) of the State of Osun Public/Political Office Holders and Revised Remuneration Package Law 2007, which recommends 300 per cent of basic salary as severance allowance.

 

The commissioner said: “The allegation is false in its entirety and absolutely unreasonable for anybody to say that the government will give each political office holder a N50 million severance allowance at this period when every available kobo is being mopped to pay salaries and pensions, provide infrastructure and social services and run a modest government.

 

“Governor Aregbesola demonstrated sensitivity to the financial situation in the state when he did not constitute a cabinet for more than two years. When he eventually did, he put all political office holders on half salary. How then could he have paid N50 million to each to political office holders as severance allowance?

 

Baderinwa explained that the payment of gratuity was a gradual process, saying “The pensioners that retired in 2009 and 2010 would be attended to first before the 2011/2012 workers who retired because they did not want to participate in the Contributory Pension Scheme.

 

“Governor Aregbesola is not insensitive to the pensioners’ plight, and I can you the set of pensioners protesting are a fraction of the 2011/2012 group, they are not speaking for the generality of pensioners.

 

“I want to appeal to the 2011/2012 pensioners not to allow themselves to be used by politicians; they had worked for the development of the state, they should not let disgruntled elements to use them to stampede the progress of the state.”

 

I Never Say Osun Pensioners Are Nuisance – Baderinwa

Following THE PUNCH Newspaper’s report where it was said that the Osun state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Adelani Baderinwa referred to a group of pensioners in the state, Forum of 2011/2012 masterminds of ‘Public Nuisance’, Mr Baderinwa has refuted the report saying at no time did he call the protesting pensioners such name.

Mr Baderinwa said that he did not at any time threaten to arrest the pensioners whenever they go out to demand for their entitlements as circulated on social media platforms.

He noted that only what he said was just to tell the senior citizens that their protests were “unbecoming” and was suspicious of being “sponsored by the opposition” as government has done a lot in investing a substantial amount of money accruing to the state coffers to addressing their plight.

In a statement in Osogbo on Monday, Baderinwa stated that the purpose and meaning of the statement was mis-contrued by the reporter as such was just to attract people’s attention.

The statement said “The attention of the Commissioner for Information and Strategy in the State of Osun, Mr Adelani Baderinwa has been called to a report by Punch Newspaper where it was said that the commissioner called a fraction of the 2011/2012 group of pensioners PUBLIC NUISANCE for their incessant protest on the payment of pension and gratuity.

“We wish to say that the commissioner did not call and would never call the 2011/2012 group of pensioners PUBLIC NUISANCE, no matter what their action could be. The commissioner did not also threaten the protesting pensioners with arrest as being circulated on the social media.

“To set the record straight, what the commissioner respectively said in reaction to the incessant protest of the 2011/2012 group of pensioners was that their actions are unbecoming of senior citizens, particularly when it was obvious that their protests are being sponsored by opposition.”

The commissioner also said “It is disturbing and unfortunate that the acclaimed 2011/2012 retires have chosen to be blackmailing the Government of the State of Osun, and disturbing peace loving citizens through sponsored protest on the payment of gratuity and not pension. It is crystal clear that the so called 2011/2012 pensioner group are obvious liars with their incessant political protests, and unbecoming of a retire civil servant who ought to be placed and respected as a senior citizen.”

While Baderinwa held his opinion about the conduct of the 2011/2012 fraction of the pensioners, the commissioner affirmed that the earlier statement was not to disrespect the senior citizens, but to make government’s position known to them.

He however assured that the Osun State Government will strive to ensure the payment of the remaining part of the pension arrears as agreed by both parties earlier in 2015.

“May we state that the commissioner was addressing the conduct of the fraction of 2011/2012 group of pensioners and not the person of the pensioners. Most importantly, the commissioner was not addressing the generality of the pension as the mischief makers are circulating, but a very minute fraction of the 2011/2012 group of pensioners.

“We respect the senior citizens as elderly people and contributors to the state development through their services in the public sector and as such would never be disrespectful to them or use uncomplimentary foul languages in addressing them. The Punch headline, we believed it was casted to be controversial just to attract the attention of the readers and generate issues as it is happening.”

EDITORIAL: Setting The Records Straight

The clarifications made by the State of Osun’s Commissioner for Information,  Adelani Baderinwa on the fiercely independent and highly respected Lagos Talks FM radio station  yesterday was seminal. We give kudos not just to the commissioner for his lucid elucidations but also to Lagos Talks FM for their professionalism.

The station had phoned the commissioner literally out of the blues to speak on the issue of salary payments in the State of Osun. His response was masterful. He completely debunked the

carefully constructed myth that the state owes salaries.

Not many people outside the state are aware that unlike elsewhere, the State of Osun which is a non-oil producing state (with all the fiscal tightness that goes with the designation) is up to date with 65% of the work force who are within GL 1-7 – have had their Full Salaries Paid; 25% of the workforce who are within GL 8-12 (have had 75% of Full Salaries Paid; 10% are within GL 13 and above (and have had 50% of Full Salaries Paid).

This achievement must not be understated. GL 1-7 are the weakest categories, the least protected socially. For the state government to continue to pay them in full, as and when due, is a clear compassionate interpretation of the social justice ethos entailed in the social contract. The overwhelming majority of the states have not interpreted the social contract in this manner.

Laudably, the State of Osun has not used the precarious fiscal situation as an excuse to cancel its rudimentary social safety nets. The greatly admired free elementary school feeding programme has continued without a break. Imitation being the most sincere form of flattery, this programme is now being replicated in some other states and is at the heart of the federal government’s social intervention programmes now too. The Osun programme has been used here by the federal government as the template since there is no sensible reason to reinvent the wheel.

We have to state here that there is a difference between a politician who thinks about the next election, and a Statesman who thinks about the next generation. Here, Aregbesola’s statesmanship and dispositions replicate the attitudes of avatars like, Jahalal Pandit Nehru (India’s first prime minister), the Labour government in the United kingdom 1945-51 and Chief Obafemi Awolowo.

It must be remembered that due to the high level of taxation needed to develop the social and physical infrastructures, Awolowo’s Action Group party continued to suffer electoral reverses in local, regional and the central elections in 1954 and 1959. He remained unfazed with the temporary setbacks. We are all aware of course about the verdicts of history on him and the government he spearheaded.

Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola is treading the same part, denying himself the luxury and the excuses of the easy way out. The verdicts of history on him will be very positive.

As we have observed before from a healthy perspective, a historical figure to whom Aregbesola approximate, is the legendary Governor of the State of California in the 1950s and 1960s, Edmund G “Pat” Brown. Of him, The Economist had cause to observe that, “It was his determined, almost obsessive investments in the physical and social infrastructure that turned California into an innovative, world class economy,”

Since Aregbesola’s ‘alternative perspective’ has now become the conventional wisdom, it is inconceivable that a new post-Aregbesola government will abandon it and seek to restore licentiousness, waste, as well as lack of planning and foresight. This is reinforced by the way in which the hegemonic base established in another period by the forerunner progressives, such as Obafemi Awolowo and Asiwaju Bola Tinubu continue to endure.

LAUTECH Receives 35Billion in Six Years, Unions Suit Against Independent Auditing Shocking – Osun Govt

The Osun State Government in a statement expressing shock over the suit filed by joint unions of the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) to stop the auditing of the university’s accounts, affirmed that over 35 billion naira has accrued to the institution since 2011.

The auditing part of the recommendations of the visitation panel set up to investigate and find lasting solution to the crisis that has crippled the institution.

The government called on parents, students and other stakeholders to prevail and plead with the unions to stop frustrating sincere steps of owner governments to get LAUTECH back on track, saying that it was not happy and uncomfortable with the prolonged strike in the institution.

In a press statement signed by the Osun State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Adelani Baderinwa, the state government maintained that it found the suit instituted by the industrial unions in Oyo State High Court shocking, unheard of and counter-productive.

The commissioner explained that the auditing of the LAUTECH, Ogbomoso accounts was recommended by the Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN) led visitation panel, and the two owner states had appointed a reputable accounting firm, KPMG firm to do the job.

He added that the LAUTECH unions, apart from chasing out the KPMG workers in the university, have persistently been working against the recommendation of the Olanipekun panel, except where the owner states were asked to raise fund.

Baderinwa, who observed that the owner states were anxious to resolve issues involved in the institution’s crisis, urged the unions to be sincere and support the owner states in its bid to get the school back on track, describing the suit by the unions as unpatriotic and ill-conceived.

According to Baderinwa, contrary to submission by the unions, the owner states have effective contractual agreement with KPMG on the forensic auditing job.

Baderinwa said: “The last time LAUTECH accounts were audited was in 2012, and a sum of N400 million was in question then. LAUTECH has 97 different accounts at this time of Treasury Single Account policy . The Wole Olanipekun panel recommended auditing of the university’s accounts as a way to address the crisis holistically.

“The Osun and Oyo states entered into effective contractual agreement with KPMG, a reputable auditing firm. KPMG workers were harassed and chased out of the university by the unions. The unions have also gone to court stop the forensic auditing as directed by the visitor of the institution, it is worth noting that the two owner states have committed a total sum of N13.626 billion to the university since 2011 aside over N10 billion that has come to the university as TETFUND and NEEDS as well over N12 billion declared as IGR for about five years now and we deserve every right to find out the way the money was spent.

“We wonder what the unions stand to gain by approaching court to stop the auditing. Do they have something to hide? How could they militate against a genuine and transparent move to get LAUTECH out of the unpleasant situation? We make bold to say that the unions’ action is unbecoming of a group of academicians and patriotic workers of the university. We appeal to them to give peace a chance,” he remarked.