A former Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has explained the circumstances of his visit to the Office of the Ilorin Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Thursday.
The Eagle Online had earlier reported an invitation extended to Fayemi by the EFCC two weeks ago: https://t.co/Xtm3ePtZtz
However, owing to the preparation for the launch of two books in honour of outgoing President Muhammadu Buhari and preparation for the inauguration of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu as President, Fayemi, a former Minister, was unable to attend to the invitation at the time.
His lawyer responded to the March 12, 2023 letter of invitation on March 15, 2023.
The former Governor then showed up at the EFCC Zonal Office in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, on Thursday.
Fayemi was, however, not pleased with the reportage of his visit to the office of the anti-graft agency.
In a statement by his Media Office in the early hours of Friday, the former Minister said he was piqued by the accusation that he was invited by the EFCC over an alleged N4 billion fraud.
The statement, titled: “Money laundering petition: Setting the records straight,” signed by the Head of the Fayemi Media Office in Abuja, Mallam Ahmad Sajoh, said: “We would like to address the concerns surrounding the invitation and subsequent visit of Dr. Kayode Fayemi, the immediate past governor of Ekiti State and former Chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF), to the Ilorin Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
“Last month, Dr. Fayemi received an invitation from the Ilorin office of the EFCC regarding a money laundering petition against him. It was during the height of the preparations for the change of government, with many activities and programmes lined up as part of the event.
“A key member of the APC, Dr. Fayemi was already committed to playing important roles at these events and his non-appearance would have impacted them significantly.
“Understanding the significance of his commitments at that time, Dr. Fayemi duly notified the EFCC of his willingness to cooperate but requested a more suitable date for his appearance.
“Yesterday morning, accompanied by his Counsel, Dr. Fayemi visited the EFCC Ilorin Office, engaging in fruitful discussions with the investigators before being allowed to depart after a few hours.
“We firmly believe that Dr. Fayemi’s visit has provided answers to the agency’s inquiries regarding the petition. However, should there be a need for further clarification, Dr. Fayemi stands ready to cooperate fully.
“We wish to note, too, that contrary to the news that made the rounds about a purported N4b fraud case against Dr. Fayemi, no such allegation was raised in his conversation with the EFCC. All he did was respond to a frivolous petition from a faceless group, the so-called Ekiti Patriotic Coalition, which we strongly believed is a front for some anti-Fayemi politicians, who are trying to soil the former governor’s good name and image.
“Throughout his tenure, Dr. Fayemi served the people of Ekiti State with utmost dedication and is renowned for his principled leadership.
“As governor, he consistently demonstrated a profound commitment to the welfare of the citizens, driving notable advancements in infrastructure development and attracting valuable investment opportunities to the state.
“We affirm that Dr. Fayemi will continue to uphold the highest standards of integrity that he’s known for, and we trust that the truth will prevail in due course.”
The petition over which Fayemi was invited has also been obtained by The Eagle Online.
It was authored by Ekiti Patriotic Consultative Forum and signed by its Secretary, Gbenga Babawibe.
It accused Fayemi of mismanagement of several billions of Naira and acquisition of properties across the country.
The petition reads in full:
ECONOMIC FINANCIAL CRIME COMMISSION
15A, OBAFEMI AWOLOWO ROAD
CALL FOR INVESTIGATION AND PROSECUTION IN RESPECT OF COMPLAINT OF FRAUDULENT PRACTISES AGAINST DR. KAYODE FAYEMI, FORMER GOVERNOR OF EKITI STATE & OTHERS
We are writing to ask that the following claims of dishonest behaviour against the former governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, along with others be looked into. Among other fraudulent activities, they include allocation of bogus Security vote for himself as the Governor, contract inflation, money-laundering, and the theft of funds intended for the State Universal Basic Education (SUBEB) programme and Local Councils, misappropriation of Fund meant for building of Airport and Township Road construction in the State.
CRIMINAL DIVERSION OF N20 BILLION LOAN PROCURED FOR CONSTRUCTION OF EKITI AGRO-ALLIED INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
On October 15, 2022, the Cargo Airport in Ado, Ekiti State was officially opened by the outing Governor of the State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi. At precisely 10.20 a.m., an ATR 42 from the Nigerian Air Force, flown by flight lieutenant E.A. Balogun, touched down on the airport’s runway to the delight of distinguished visitors, dignitaries, and members of the general public who had gathered to witness the historic event.
After the fraudulent commissioning, Dr. Fayemi claimed in a series of tweets that “It is of a world-class standard,” fully aware that he had deceived the public. According to him ‘’We can accept huge goods, such as aircraft, since we are a category 4E airport. Two 747-400 may be comfortably fit on the cargo apron, which measures 155 by 128 metres. Three Boeing 737s can also fit on the passenger apron, which measures 137 by 100.5 metres. “The runaway is 3.2 km long and 60 metres wide (7-5 metres each at the shoulders) at maximum power. The terminal building was constructed to handle and operate both local and international travellers.
But it is disappointing to see that the Airport has not been finished several months after the ostensible inauguration. There hasn’t been a control tower yet. While the cargo apron is being built, runway marking is still going on. Military jets land anywhere, according to Mr. Sam Adurogboye, spokesperson for the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), who admitted that the airport has not been finished. A military aircraft landing at the airport does not always indicate it is fully operational, according to Group Captain John Ojikutu (Rtd. ), a former commandant of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport. He clarified that a commercial aircraft carrying people is the only way that an airport can be considered to be operational. He questioned the justification for flying politicians to the recently built airport aboard a military plane.
It is pertinent to note that the airport’s commissioning was hastily completed to hide the mishandling and diversion of the N20 billion financing that was obtained for the airport project. It is unfortunate that the false commissioning of the unfinished airport has been linked to the Nigeria Air Force.
Flowing from the above, it is obvious that Governor Kayode Fayemi hired a Nigeria Air Force aircraft to land at the unfinished airport that was being built in Ado, Ekiti State, to create the false impression that the project has been finished. However, the current Administration in Ekiti State has taken over the airport project as the money set aside for it was misappropriated by former Governor Kayode Fayemi.
The unfinished work at the airport has been included in the Ekiti State budget for 2023, according to Mr. Niyi Adebayo, Special Budget Advisor to Governor Biodun Oyebanji. The Commission should conduct a thorough investigation into the criminal diversion of the N20 billion loan obtained from banks for the construction of the Ekiti Agro-Allied International Airport. The unfinished airport project has cost more over N16.5 billion, according to the Ekiti State Government.
CRIMINAL DIVERSION OF N21.6 BILLION FOR ROAD CONSTRUCTION IN EKITI STATE
The Ekiti State Commissioner for Budget and Economic Planning, Mr. Olufemi Ajayi, said on January 21, 2022, that the government will utilise N11.6 billion of the 2022 budget to repair the township roads in the state capital to facilitate the movement of people and vehicles. The State government claimed that the roads in Ado Ekiti, the State Capital had been repaired at the conclusion of the Kayode Fayemi administration.
But it is typical review of the state of Ado Ekiti Township Road as at the end of tenure of Fayemi’s administration, in October 2022, all the main roads had collapsed in Ekiti State.
Additionally, it is known that Governor Fayemi claimed to have used funds from the Ekiti State Government to fix and repair federal roads in the state. The Federal Government gave the Ekiti State Government N10 billion in response to a reimbursement request for road repairs. However, the Fayemi administration made sure that the Ekiti State Government’s account was not credited with the aforementioned N10 billion refund.
Because the aforementioned N11.6 billion was not used to build roads, the roads in Ekiti State were unpassable and was in a state of disrepair. The Kayode Fayemi government has to provide an explanation for the aforementioned N11.6 billion. The government must also clarify the reasons behind the Federal Government did not credit the Ekiti State Government with the N10 billion refund.
In view of the aforementioned, we urge that the Commission to look into the unlawful diversion of the N11.6 billion that was spent in 2022 on roads in Ekiti State as well as the N10 billion that the federal government refunded to the Ekiti State Government despite no single Federal road in the state was passable under his watch.
PROPERTIES ACQUIRED FRAUDULENTLY WITH EKITI STATE FUNDS BY DR. KAYODE FAYEMI, FORMER GOVERNOR OF EKITI STATE
When he became the Governor of Ekiti State in 2010, Dr. Kayode Fayemi wanted to demonstrate that he was a man of integrity. He declared his assets and published them. We have established that as Governor, Dr. Fayemi acquired five properties with funds belonging to the Ekiti State Government. Hence, when he left office in 2014 and 2022, he could not publish his assets.
It may interest you to know that the properties declared and published in 2010 by Dr. Fayemi include the following:
i. A undeveloped plot of land at Guzape District in Abuja valued at N30 million
An undeveloped plot of land at Lekki Phase 1 in Lagos valued at N25 million;
iii. An undeveloped plot of land at Ambassadorial Enclave, Legon, Ghana valued at US$250,000.
Howbeit, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has since diverted public funds belonging to the Ekiti State Government to develop the said empty landed properties. The three properties and two others acquired by Dr. Fayemi outside his legitimate salaries and allowances include the following:
(I) The undeveloped plot of land at Guzape District in Abuja has been developed, and a house has been built on it The house is located at Wada Nas Street, off Edwin Clark street, off El Rufai Street, Guzape District, Abuja, FCT. The house is worth N500 million.
(ii) The undeveloped plot of land at Lekki Phase 1 in Lagos has been developed, and a house has been built on it worth N700 million.
(iii) The undeveloped plot of land at Ambassadorial Enclave, Legon, Ghana has been developed, and a house has been built on it worth $2 million.
(iv) Governor Fayemi also acquired a property at No 55, Oduduwa Crescent. He transferred funds from the Ekiti State Government through Mr. Tayo Ayeni of Skymit Limited, an auto company to pay for the property. Mr. Ayeni was arrested by the EFCC over the illegal acquisition of the property. The house is currently worth N500 million.
(v) Dr. Fayemi also acquired a mansion in Jericho,GRA, Ibadan, Oyo state worth over 500 Million Naira.
(vi) Dr. Fayemi bought a Mansion (St Peter White House) belong to Late Aderanti Adeyinka besides Fresh FM Radio Station, Falegan Street, along Ado – Ilawe Road,
Ado Ekiti State through front. The house he currently resides is worth not less than N300 million, and heavily renovated with Ekiti State Government money.
4: NEW GOVERNOR’S OFFICE
4 a: On March 3rd, 2012, PONTI-ITALWARE Nig Ltd. received a contract for the building of the earthwork for the New Governor’s Office, A total of N115,170,273.32 was paid to the contractor out of a total of N383.900,911.06.
The State Government got a N25 billion bond, with N3, 474,700.000.00 set aside for the New Governor’s Office construction project. Although PONTI-ITALWARE Nig Ltd was paid N115, 170,273,32 for earthwork, the site was abandoned, and little actual work was done there. The project consultant, BOC ARCHITECTS, of 32 Adeola Adeleye Street, Ilupeju, Lagos, was compensated with N11,596,746,41. Despite receiving N115,170,273.32 in payment, nothing significant happened.
4b: The contract for building the New Governor’s Office was awarded to Messrs. Interkel NigLtd. Ltd., 12 Maitama Sule Street, Southwest Ikoyi, Lagos, (0812900918). on March 1, 2014, N2, 027,495,857.45 was the contract’s total estimated value; Out of the N608,248,757.24 (30%) mobilisation fee, N100,000,000 was paid to the contractor with no results show for the payment.
25 BILLION BOND AND 5 BILLION COMMERCIAL BANK LOAN
5a. To fund capital projects, N25 billion was obtained from the capital market by Dr. Kayode Fayemi during his first term in office between the year 2010 and 2014. This was acquired in two instalments in October 2011 and January 2014, totaling N20 billion and N5 billion.
The House of Assembly adopted the Bond Prospectus, which was not followed since funds were moved to projects that weren’t stated in the Bond Prospectus. For instance, N1 billion was allocated to build the Civic Centre, but N1, 465,401,522.72 from the bond was used, leaving the project unfinished. Additionally, the State Pavilion, which received N1,583,292,358, and the overall amount N1,457,945,445.44 was paid to the contractor went unfinished.
5b. Using Fountain Holdings Limited, a business with a N15 million share capital to obtained N5 billion loan on June 21, 2014, towards Governorship election in Ekiti State. It was stated that the N5 billion loan would be utilised to carry out major projects like road building since it was received from EcoBank without recourse to the Debt Management Office (DMO).
Our inquiry is: Does Fountain Holdings Limited have the authority to carry out capital projects for the Ekiti State Government, such as road construction?
The business’s share capital is N15m, thus we are perplexed as to how EcoBank could provide a N5bn loan to a company with N15m share capital without involving the DMO. Since the N5 billion has not yet been used, it is possible that the loan was taken to support Fayemi’s failed re-election campaign at the time.
BUILDING OF A NEW GOVERNMENT HOUSE
KOURIS Construction Nigeria Limited was given a contract on July 27, 2012, to build a new government building. Initial contract payment was N2, 054,573,822.00. Curiously, on October 10, 2014—FIVE DAYS before Dr. Kayode Fayemi’s administration ended—another N730, 186,636.87 contract for further work was given to the same business, It was said that the extra work was required as a consequence of errors in the project’s initial Bill of Quantities.
Considering that a contract was awarded on July 27th, 2012, why wait until the last moment of the administration, On October 10, 2014, when there were five days left that the administration just realised that there were mistakes when the project’s first Bill of Quantities was computed?
Curiously, KITWOOD Nigeria Ltd, received yet another N604, 961,645.72 contract. For the outfitting of the government mansion, a deadline of June 18, 2014, was set (three days before the June 21, 2014, gubernatorial election). The contractor was requested to appear at the office of Yemi Adaramodu, the chief of staff for Fayemi as at the time, to sign the contract and acquire specifics of the things to be purchased in order to demonstrate that the State Ministry of Works was not involved in the contract award or implementation. Additionally, the address provided by the Company as the business address does not exist.
7: DIVERSION OF THE STATE UNIVERSAL BASIC EDUCATION BOARD’S (SUBEB)
The illicit withdrawal of N852,936,713.92 from SUBEB Access Bank Account Number 0065385694 occurred on October 8, 2014, eight days to the end of tenure of Dr. Fayemi as Governor of Ekiti State. The Ekiti State Government provided the N852,936,713.92 counterpart money in order to receive the 2012 Marching Grant of N852,936,793.12 from the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC). The Universal Basic Education (UBE) Act of 2004’s Section 11(2) was broken by this unauthorised withdrawal. It should be remembered that Dr. Yakubu Gambo, the Deputy Executive Secretary of the UBEC, testified at the Senate Committee on Finance’s Budget Defence that Dr. Fayemi had diverted the N852.9 million in counterpart money that the federal government had provided via the UBEC for education to other uses. When defending the claim, Mr. Dapo Kolawole, who served as Fayemi’s commissioner for finances, claimed that there was no law prohibiting States from borrowing supplementary funding for state capital development initiatives.
Following this unauthorised withdrawal, UBEC ordered a letter to be sent to the Ekiti SUBEB in which the commission demanded that the N852, 936,713.92 be returned to the SUBEB’s account. Ekiti SUBEB’s access to the FGN-UBE Intervention Fund has likewise been halted by UBEC till further notice. The withdrawal was deemed a criminal conduct that breached Section 11(2) of the UBE conduct 2004 by UBEC in a letter dated April 16, 2015 with Reference Number; UBEC/FA/SUBEB/EK/183/Vol.II/ 162. The letter further stated that Ekiti State would no longer be permitted to access the FGN-UBE Intervention Fund. Attached are letters from UBEC dated April 16, 2015, and April 29, 2015, as well as an extract from the Ekiti SUBEB Statement of Account.
8: DIVERSION OF STATE UNIVERSAL BASIC EDUCATION BOARD (SUBEB) FUND
In 2012, under the headship of Mr. Kelekun, The Bureau of Special Projects (within the Governor’s office) issued contracts totaling N4, 246,094,751.14 in value. The contracts included the building of classrooms, furnishing of schools, and rehabilitation of schools. These initiatives received funding from the accounts of the Local Governments and SUBEB. N3, 672,078,820.14 of these contracts were only for school renovations. Strabic Nig received contract worth of NI, 152,562,555.14, Atlantic Offshore & Properties. Ltd got contract worth of NI, 152,562,555.14, Bam Darley Nig Ltd equally got contract worth of N924, 977,310.95, while Fatub Nig Ltd got N486.794.545.84.
As soon as the remodelling contracts were let out, Atlantic Offshore &Properties received N750 million (70% ) of the contract value. Strabic Nig, Ltd. received N600,000,000 (65%) of the contract value. Bam Darly Nig. Ltd received N600,000,000 (70%) of the contract sum, and whereas Fatub Nig. Engineering Ltd was paid N150 million amounting to (60%) of the contract sum.
Even before the construction started, a total of N2.1 billion was paid to these contractors from SUBEB and LG accounts, with more than 40% of the money going into unauthorised private accounts.
THE CAPITAL PROJECTS REPORT FOR 2014
THE CONTRACTORS’ PAYMENTS WERE SHOWN AS;
Strabic Nig.Ltd- N957,237,829.62,
Atlantic Ofshore &Properties -NI 022,130,415.64
Bam Darley Nig. Ltd- N742, 730,990.25
Fatub Engineering Nig . Ltd- N431, 327,270.41
Only 60% of the work had been completed when NI, 022,130,415.64 was paid to Atlantic Offshore & Properties, so this company was only entitled to N691, 537,551. Bam Darley Nig,. Ltd, which received N742, 730,990.25, completed 60% of the task as well and should have received N554, 986,386.57 instead.
INFLATION OF ROAD CONTRACTS
Contracts for road rehabilitation were given out at wildly inflated prices, with some of the roads costing as much as N50 million per km. Only the failed portion of the structure needed to be cut out, filled with a laterite and stone base, and covered with asphalt. No new box culverts, pipe culverts, or subsurface drainages were built.
For instance, 10.7km Ado-Afao was granted at N538, 638,704.26, 17km Ilawe-Igbara Odo-lbuji road, which was awarded at a little above N200M by the previous Government before Fayemi’ Government was re-awarded at N894,698,043.75, 11.5km Ado-Ilawe road was awarded at N482,849,098.20, and 3.6km ljigbo-Baptist College Ado Ekiti was awarded at N788,038,599.60, while Fajuyi-University Teaching Hospital Road, which is less than 3km in length, was awarded for N447,544,063.50. Plycon Nig Ltd was given the contract to renovate the 13km Old Garrage-Ado-Ikere road for N2, 369,833,077.15. and Heartland Nig.Ltd won the contract to build the 0.8 km Old Garrage-Ojumose (Ado-Ekiti) road. At N866, 872,873.13.
10: THE LG’S FUNDS WERE DIVERTED TO PAY FOR STATE GOVERNMENT-APPROVED ROADS.
Road reconstruction of 5km Township roads using the State Public Works Corporation (PWC) started in every one of the 16 LGs. While funding for the project was deducted from the local councils’ allocation, contracts for the rehabilitation of these roads were awarded without input from the corresponding LGs.
For instance, N368 was granted for the restoration of 5km roads in Moba LG. 368,950,821.09, Ilejemeje LG for N347,914,157,68. And Ido/Osi LG for N329, 950,812.50. despite the fact that the PWC contracts were given to supporters of Governor Kayode Fayemi which made the majority of the road projects abandoned.
11: 156 FORD AUTOMOBILES WERE FRAUDULENTLY PURCHASED FROM COSCHARIS MOTORS.
The Government of Fayemi bought 156 Ford automobiles from Coscharis Motors Limited for the Traditional rulers in Ekiti State with a NI.2 billion loan secured from First Bank Plc. In contrast to Coscharis’ letter of May 2, 2014, which claimed it delivered 235 units, it is known that only 156 of the cars were delivered. The remaining 79 automobiles have not been located as of today.
Additionally, it is known that the request for a vehicle supply was made on November 14, 2013, and that the Obas received their vehicles on August 27, 2013; On November 13, 2013, the supplier, Coscharis, also registered in Ekiti State as a civil/building contractor. The company that provided the cars, Coscharis, is only listed as a civil/building While the vehicles were supplied in August 2013 and distributed on August 27, 2013, the contractor in Ekiti State submitted a proposal for the supply of the vehicles on November 14, 2013, three full months before the proposal was made.
Additionally, it is known that on November 15, 2013, instructions were given to Local Government Chairmen to discuss the proposal sent by Coscharis on November 14, 2013, in their F&GPC meetings, and their decision to get back to ministry of Local Government & chieftancy affairs not later than November 22, 2013, while the vehicles they were to discuss in their F&GPC meetings in November were delivered in August and distributed to the Obas on August 1.
Additionally, while the tracking was carried out on the vehicles was done on September 13,2013,and distributed on August 27, 2013, the Certificate of No Objection to Purchase the Vehicles was given on February 24, 2014, on September 13, 2013.
ADO EKITI TOWNSHIP FLOWER BEAUTIFICATION
Nine companies were awarded contracts totaling N596, 151,159.10 to build walkways and improve Ado Ekiti, the capital of the Ekiti State. N306, 165,425.90 in total was given to the contractors. Visiting the undertaking Sites will show that no noteworthy actions were taken to warrant this payment.
In addition to Dr. Kayode Fayemi, the following individuals are allegedly engaged in the case: among other things, dishonest acts.
Mr. Dapo Kolawole -08135063506.
Mr. Yemi Adaramodu’s number is 08035019919.
Mr. Abiodun Oyebanji’s number is 08072074878.
Mr. Bayo Kelekun’s contact information is 08129020900
Arc Oyelade (CASA Nig Ltd)- 07059825045.
Interkel Nig. Ltd-08033223296,08033223296
Please take note that the Judicial Panel of Inquiry, which the Ekiti State Government established in May 2017, gathered information on most of the accusations stated above as well as additional ones. Attached to this letter is the Commission’s Report. In the interest of Justice, protection of public fund and considering President Muhammadu Buhari’s campaign against corruption, we want the government to take swift action by ordering a comprehensive inquiry and possible prosecution of anyone found wanting in these financial infractions.
Thanking you in anticipation of your swift action.
Gbenga Babawibe, Esq.
Secretary; Ekiti Patriotic Consultative Forum.