*”What will an Ekiti man do with such an amount?”
*Ekiti House of Assembly not paid in the last six months
Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State took his alleged trademark fraudulent life to the nation’s capital, Abuja, at the weekend at the convention of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) where he short-changed Ekiti State delegates by giving them a pittance instead of the convention largesse to other delegates from other states who voted for Uche Secondus as the National Chairman.
While delegates from other states were pocketing $10,000 (Ten Thousand Dollars) as their own share for voting Uche Secondus as PDP Chairman, Ekiti State delegates were very happy that they too would go back home with $10,000 richer.
They were wrong. Their hopes were dashed by their governor who allegedly collected the share for the 92 delegates from Ekiti State and gave them peanut of N50,000 (Fifty Thousand Naira) per delegate out of the huge sum.
Fayose pocketed N3, 600, 000 per delegate and there were 92 delegates from Ekiti state (including the governor) whom he led to the convention.
Though, notorious for a greedy life, which is not news to those who know him, that he could be so callous to treat his fellow human beings in such a depraved manner is something that baffled the closest of his men who were among the delegates.
Ekiti Periscope reliably learnt that the ordeals of the state delegates started right from the taking off of their trip from Ado Ekiti to Abuja as the buses conveying majority of the delegates broke down one after the other on the dangerous Lokoja-Abuja highway notorious for kidnappers. Many of them spent hours on the road without a kobo in their pockets because they had not been paid in the last six months.
The delegates, who were mostly House of Assembly members and party executives at the state level, including the delegates from local governments, suffered hunger and deprivation on the road.
When they eventually made the trip to Abuja, Fayose treated them like goats as he didn’t even ask them how they fared in their trip even though he was aware of their plights on their journey to Abuja.
The Friday night preceding the convention was when the Ekiti delegates realised that they were nothing more than slaves in the hands of Governor Fayose, who, instead of allowing them to collect their own largesse of $10,000 (ten thousand dollars) directly by themselves as delegates from other states did, he (Fayose) collected the dollars on behalf of the delegates.
Reports said a source close to Secondus quoted Fayose as saying that Ekiti delegates would run mad at the sight of such a huge amount of money which if changed to Naira will amount to N3, 650,000. “What will an Ekiti man do with such an amount?” Fayose was quoted as saying.
Therefore, Fayose collected the dollars and paid each of the delegates N50,000 and pocketed the rest amounting to N332,150,000 (Three Hundred And Thirty Two Million, One Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira).
When Ekiti delegates received their pittance from Fayose and discovered that it was a far cry from what other delegates from other states received for voting Secondus, many of them burst into tears and wondered if they could ever enjoy any benefit from their leader, Governor Ayo Fayose, who has since graduated from Ebora to n je jollof rice to Ebora to n je bailout and now to Ebora to n je delegates dollars!
A magazine, The Class, had last week reported how Fayose traded off South West’s interest for $1m in the PDP convention for the election of the national chairmanship election of the party that Nigerians thought would go in favour of Ekiti State aspirant, Prof Tunde Adeniran.
Fayose allegedly collected $1m from a South South governor to work against the interest of the South West in favour of Secondus from the South South, who eventually emerged the winner after Adeniran left the convention in anger over alleged votes buying in which the professor pointedly accused Fayose and Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State.
Having impoverished many of the delegates who are House of Assembly members by deliberately denying them of their salary for the past six months, their hope of cushioning the effects of the poverty at the convention was also dashed by Fayose who loves money than his children.
Several of former and present aides and political allies of Fayose said that the governor does not joke with money and that he hates to see his allies making progress in form of building houses or buying cars. They said he hates to see his aides having money in their pockets. They added and except they (aides) steal from him, no aide, no matter how close is he to Fayose, can get any financial assistance from him and if he succeeds in stealing from him, that aide dare not do anything visible from the money, such as buying cars or building houses because the moment Fayose knows, he will sack such an aide.
Periscope learnt that while Fayose, his son Rogba, wife Feyi and his mother Prophetess Oluwayose are the contractors for all Ekiti jobs through their many proxies, members of his cabinet and House of Assembly members are wallowing in abject poverty as they have not been paid for months and they dare not complain but can only cry in silence. Some of his commissioners don’t even attend Exco meetings again because of frustration.
Ekiti delegates have since returned home licking their wounds. One of them who spoke to our reporter, said: “I don’t know what this man wants to do with all the money he is amassing. I never knew Fayose is this heartless! Imagine what we went through on that dangerous Abuja road leaving our family behind.
“We could have been kidnapped or even be involved in an accident, but despite all that, this man collected our share of the money for delegates and gave us peanuts. We may be powerless to ask him questions but God will ask him and judge him accordingly.”
This is not the first time Fayose allegedly shortchanged members of his party in his administration.
One of his sacked commissioners had stories to tell about Fayose’s greed in approving cash for them for government’s assignments.
For instance, a former commissioner approached Fayose to approve money for him for official assignment in Abuja for two days. Fayose asked how much he needed and the commissioner quoted N500,000. The governor agreed and asked him to prepare his request in a memo. The commissioner did and Fayose approved.
But as the commissioner left the governor’s office, Fayose called his agent in the Accountant’s Office to bring the cash to his office instead of paying it directly to the commissioner.
After Fayose received the cash from the Accountant’s office, he called the commissioner to his office and asked him how much he said he needed to make Abuja trip. The commissioner said N500,000.
Furious, Fayose, who had already collected N500,000 on behalf of the commissioner, rose on his feet and started harassing the commissioner. He asked him why he needed that much for two days and whether he was going to Abuja with all the staff in his office or whether he was taking a battalion of security agents along with him.
Fayose therefore declared: “Ekiti State is broke. You can only get N150,000.”
The shocked commissioner was transfixed, unable to reconcile himself with the information at his disposal from the Accountant’s office that his trip cash of N500,000 had been taken to the governor for collection.
While N500,000 was recorded against the commissioner in official file, he got only N150,000 while Fayose kept N350,000 to himself.
Another instance is the duping of an hotelier from Ibadan who was engaged by the governor’s hotelier brother, Bimbo Fayose, owner of Bimdok Hotel along Bank Road, Ado-Ekiti, on a lease term of four years to manage the hotel.
Sources said when Fayose visited the hotel, he inquired from the man whether he could also take a job to fix his banners and that of PDP on electricity poles along Ado-Ekiti road and few other routes at the cost of N1, 550,000.
At a time, the man complained that there was no way he could make profit with the money approved for the job that would take him days to carry out.
Reluctantly, the man managed to carry out the job by skipping poles instead of fixing the banners on all poles along the routes. At last, he carried out the job leaving a balance of N22,500 balance, which the man delivered back to the governor.
To the man’s shock, Fayose declared to him that the N22,500 was his profit for the job done in two weeks.
More shock awaited the man after discovering that Fayose officially processed N250m for the job. Boldly and angrily, the man went to the governor complaining that he could not take N22,500 for a job the governor processed for N250m and for which barely N1m was spent.
In his usual foxy manner, Fayose plotted to exit the man from Ekiti State to halt him from embarrassing him by summoning officials of the State Internal Revenue to seal off Bindok Hotel over alleged tax payment default to render the man jobless. The hotel was subsequently sealed off after the man spent barely six months out of a four-year lease agreement.
Not done, the man started receiving threat messages accusing him of confrontation with the government. The man has since fled the state to escape attacks by the governor’s thugs.
Recently, Ekiti Periscope reported why Fayose sacked a Permanent Secretary over alleged World Bank grant fraud while another was threatened with a sack over refusal to alter N4m payment approval to N45m.
In the report, Fayose removed the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance, Mr Alabi and transferred him to the Department of Establishment in the state civil service.
Trouble started for Alabi after Fayose demanded in a memo for the release of N50m from $1m World Bank’s grant (N360m) for Save-a-Life Health Project. The governor later approved the warrant for the release of N50m and was withdrawn from the World Bank’s grant and taken to his office on the pretext of combating emergency health-related issues.
Surprisingly, according to a Governor’s Office source, a few days later, Fayose prepared another warrant for the same purpose but cleverly altered the date on the earlier memo. Other sources said Alabi noted the anomaly in the two memos based on the same head and ordered an audit query into the anomaly.
Fayose got wind of this and became angry and ordered immediate Alabi’s dismissal from service for alleged insubordination. His dismissal letter was promptly prepared for onward delivery to him, but influential leaders intervened to save Alabi’s head. Fayose allowed him to stay but transferred him to the Establishment Department (Estab) while the erstwhile Estab Permanent Secretary was moved to the Ministry of Finance.
Another permanent secretary also had a bitter taste of the governor’s anger when Fayose allegedly asked her to alter a bill of N5m to N45m.
According to sources, the permanent secretary, a woman, was reportedly shivering before the governor when she was asked to add 4 before 5 in a N5m bill presented to the governor for approval to make N45m for services in the Government House.
The woman refused, explaining that she would be in trouble in Audit Department in future. A furious governor threatened her with immediate dismissal for insurbordination. Almost at the same time, Fayose applied clemency and reduced the punishment to immediate resignation.
The woman on her knees begged and begged for the governor to spare her to retain her job. The governor agreed but not before she appended her signature to change a bill of N5m to N45m.
Fayose had earlier hidden under projects commissioning to fleece the Government of Ekiti State to the tune of N30 million.
During his last projects commissioning, Fayose invited eight PDP governors to Ado-Ekiti for the commissioning of projects like the Bank Road project and expansion project on Awelede Road. Also commissioned were projects that Fayose spent no kobo but over which he was claiming credit. These projects include Funmi Olayinka Women Centre that cost a bank N600m and Ikere road that cost Wema Bank alone N400m among other private organisations that contributed money for projects but which Fayose personally collected.
Fayose raised a Projects Commissioning Committee that presented a budget of N20 million to him but which he jerked up to N42 million. The money was collected from Floating Account. Floating Account is “Fraud Account” by Fayose to steal Ekiti money without trace.
For the commissioning ceremony, after collecting cash, Fayose released only N10m for the committee, leaving N32 million to himself.
He shared part of the N10m to cronies and committee members, with each committee member getting N30,000. The Deputy Governor, Dr Kolapo Olusola, who is also a member of the Planning Committee, got N60,000.
It would be recalled that there was also a report of how Fayose cut the Deputy Governor’s security vote and added it to his own security vote.
Fayose had called the deputy governor to his office and asked him how much was his security vote. The deputy governor responded: “N25 million.”
Fayose then asked him whether he kept an army or a police force to require that much for the office of the deputy governor. Fayose then asked again: “How much was your running grant at the Obafemi Awolowo where you lectured before becoming the deputy governor?” The deputy governor was dumb-founded, but Fayose broke the silence, declaring: “Mr Deputy Governor, Ekiti State is broke. Government cannot afford more than N5 million for your security vote.”
But when one would think that Fayose would return the balance of N20 million to the treasury, he never did, as he added it to his monthly security vote that was then N250m before recently jerking it up to N300m and another N90m monthly vote called “Sundry Expenses”.