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Aregbesola replies Oyetola’s ex-commissioner on N407bn Osun debt claims

The former Governor of Osun State, Rauf Aregbesola has reacted to claims by the former Commissioner for Finance under the administration of the immediate past governor of Osun State, Gboyega Oyetola, Bola Oyebamiji.

News Direct had reported Oyebamiji saying Aregbesola was responsible for the N407bn Osun debt of the state.

Reacting, Aregbesola on Friday said the Accountant-General of the state should be in a better position to give the true particulars of the indebtedness of the state.

Reacting to the statement by Oyebamiji on the contention that the debts were incurred by his government, Aregbesola, through his media aide, Mr Sola Fasure, said the impasse was between Adeleke and Oyetola, and so he should not be in the picture.

While admitting that he took loans, he said the two major ones he took had been liquidated while “the other ones are long-term concessional facilities (given to the state) by the Federal Government” with minimal monthly deductions.

Aregbesola said: “I will suggest that you look at all the loans and get to the Accountant-General of the state at Abere. I think the Accountant  General or the Permanent Secretary (Finance) would have better information because it is the Accountant-General that raised a memo based on the query of the governor.

“The Accountant-General, in reply to the query of the governor, stated the condition of the loans and the loans that are outstanding. He is the most knowledgeable about the loans by the state as the custodian of the account of the state. They should count Aregbesola out of it.”

He said the loans collected by the Aregbesola government had been liquidated, saying “was it Aregbesola that took a loan of N18billion after he lost the election?” The two major loans Aregbesola took have been liquidated. They were the Sukkuk loan and the other ones were long-term concessionary facilities by the Federal Government which have a long span repayment terms. The deductions are minimal and they are not deductions that will infringe on finances of the state.”

He said: “The matter is between the Adeleke and Oyetola administrations because the Aregbesola debts have been liquidated. It was not Aregbesola that took the N18 billion loan that was taken after the election. Oyetola took some other loans, including salary support from the Federal Government.

“They caused the problem for themselves. If they had set up a transition committee and if they had cooperated well with the incoming governor after they had lost election, there would have been a smooth change of government.

“They would have compared notes and there would be no rancour. But he was busy sowing mines on the path of the incoming governor, creating problems for him, and spending money with reckless abandon. What did he do with N18 billion? Now the new government is fighting back. If the new government takes the matter up to the EFCC, there would be problems for the Oyetola administration.

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