“Most importantly, we admit that the state workers are being owed four months’ salary and this was occasioned by the monthly deductions from the state allocation as a result of huge debt incurred by the Fayemi administration. Even the N9.5 billion bailout fund was for the payment of the arrears of salaries and deduction left unpaid by the Fayemi’s government.”
The All Progressive Congress (APC) yesterday gives their views on the issues surrounding restructuring debates that is on-going says proponents by some Nigerians are not realizable.
The governing party’s submission follows the arguments between vice president Yemi Osinbajo, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and the recent position of the former Senate president David Mark after his Declaration to vie for the position of the president where he was quoted to have said restructuring is the anwser to nigeria’s problem”.
Osinbajo and the presidential aspirant had engaged in a tug of war on what the concept of restructuring actually means.
Supporting the vice president’s position yesterday, the APC said: “We must never succumb to ethnic champions who promote campaigns to break up the country into tiny bits or other unrealistic and unpatriotic proposals in the name of restructuring to solve our problems as a country. It is simplistic and unconstitutional.”
According to the ruling party, “Alhaji Atiku was vice president and chairman of the National Economic Council throughout the eight years of the President Olusegun Obasanjo administration. How did he use his office to correct the imbalance in our federation he expresses today? Senator David Mark (another presidential aspirant) was Senate President for eight years and never sponsored a motion on restructuring. Today, he is promising to restructure the country.”
The APC, therefore, warned that such calls by a section of the country’s elite are populist and mere ploys to politically exploit public narratives on the panacea to the country’s problems. The citizenry must be wary of latter-day converts to the matter of restructuring in a bid to score political goals, it said.
A statement by the party’s spokesman, Yekini Nabena, reads in part: “The APC believes that good, sincere, focused, and purposeful leadership, at all levels, will propel the country to its deserved heights. Sincere efforts towards achieving true federalism are more important than politically exploited populist rhetoric, which achieves nothing.
“With emphasis on practicability, constitutionality and reality, we are confident that true federalism or restructuring, as some will like to call it, will be better achieved under the President Buhari-led APC administration.
“Also, the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP) scheme, comprising GEEP MarketMoni; GEEP FarmerMoni and GEEP TraderMoni is being executed by the Bank of Industry and is providing interest-free loans to petty traders and artisans across Nigeria.”
The statement added: “With the inception of the President Buhari administration, a well-articulated roadmap, considering all the issues involved in ensuring a new, well secured, better governed Nigeria with equitable distribution of resources within the component federating units, is being given serious attention.”
But seemingly unimpressed, the Presidential Aspirants Coming Together Group (PACT) insisted there was no going back on its resolve to unseat the Buhari government.
The group, in a statement by one of its aspirants, Mathias Baba Tsado, disclosed it had perfected plans to align with other opposition parties to achieve the goal.
“It is often believed that the route to success is filled with various challenges and only those who have the ability to pack, unpack and repack make it to the top. PACT, as a group, might have hit a brick wall but our resolve to rescue Nigeria remains undoubted,” the statement adds.
Meanwhile, incumbent governor of Ekiti state, Mr. Ayodele Fayose has said contrary to claims coming from the governor elect during presentation of report submitted in relation to its transition committee headed by senator Adetumbi that claimed in the report that Ekiti state debt has risen to the tune of N117 Billion. Fayose has debunk this claim saying the allegation by the Governor-elect, Dr Fayemi untrue and that it was Fayemi that dragged the state into 117 billion instead.
The incumbent governor he never commit the state to any financial indebtedness and that no loan can be granted without the approval of Debt Management Office, DMO, and Federal Ministry of Finance and that these two offices should publish details of any loan taken by the Fayose administration, including the banks that granted such loans.” The governor-elect had quoted DMO as saying their latest report revealed that the debt profile of the state had increased from N18 billion Fayose inherited in 2014 to N117 billion.
The government, which said the state Governor-elect, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, was already preparing excuses for his impending failure, declared that “unlike him (Fayemi) who was not courageous enough to answer questions on his administration before a duly constituted probe panel, Governor Fayose is not afraid of being probed either by the state or Federal Government.” Special Assistant to the Governor on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, said, yesterday, in a reaction to claim by Fayemi on the state’s debt that “Ekiti State indebtedness stands at N59.5 billion that was either directly inherited from the Fayemi’s administration or incurred as a result of the loans restructuring done at the instance of the Federal Government and the Federal Economic Council.
” He gave the breakdown as follows: Commercial bank loan, N2,087,788,065.28; CBN grant for water project, N163,450,000; Excess Crude Account-backed loan, N9,545,173,472.78; Bailout, N9,083,761,215.40; FGN Bonds, N18,226,699,707.18; state bonds, N3,484,469,345.51 and budget support, N16,869,000,000. “Particularly, the N10 billion grant released from the Excess Crude Account for capital projects was a fund that should normally accrue to all states.