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Fayemi’s Misappropriation Of N852.9m SUBEB Counterpart Fund Costing Ekiti N2.8bn UBE Fund—Govt

By Lere Olayinka
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Ekiti State Government has said the misappropriation of N852.9 million State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) counterpart fund by the immediate past All Progressives Congress (APC) government of Dr Kayode Fayemi made the Universal Basic Education Board (UBEC) to blacklist the State, making it impossible for the State to access 2013, 2014 and 2015 Matching Grant running to over N2.8 billion.

Last Wednesday, UBEC Deputy Executive Secretary, Dr. Yakubu Gambo told the Senate Committee on Finance’s Budget Defence that Dr Fayemi, who is now the Minister of Solid Minerals used the N852.9 million counterpart funds dedicated for education by the federal government through the UBEC for other purposes.

Reacting, the SUBEB Chairman, Senator Bode Ola said it was painful that Ekiti State and its people were suffering for the sin committed by the APC government of Fayemi, adding that “it is even more embarrassing and ridiculous that Fayemi’s commissioner for Finance, Dapo Kolawole could defend this clear criminal act perpetrated against the people of Ekiti State by saying there was no law forbidding States from borrowing counterpart funds to support states capital development operations.”

Senator Ola said; “A sum of N852, 936,713.92 was paid into the SUBEB Access Bank account on January 14, 2014 as counterpart fund for 2012 UBEC projects and on this premise, UBEC released its Matching Grant of N852, 936,793.12 on January 3, 2013.

“On October 8, 2014, eight days to the end of Fayemi’s tenure, the same amount of N852, 936,713.92 was transferred from the account of SUBEB, leaving a sum of N9, 139,691.40 as credit balance in the account.

“This was done without the knowledge and approval of UBEC and because of this misappropriation, UBEC blacklisted Ekiti State and this has made it impossible for us to access Matching Grant for 2013, 2014 and 2015.

“UBEC, in a letter dated April 16, 2015, with Reference Number; UBEC/FA/SUBEB/EK/183/Vol.II/162 described the withdrawal as criminal act that violated Section 11(2) of UBE Act 2004 and conveyed its suspension of Ekiti State from accessing any further FGN-UBE Intervention Fund.

“For this reason, all UBEC/SUBEB 2012 ongoing projects have been halted, payment for all 2012 projects cannot be made to contractors, fund for special education; teachers capacity building etc for 2013, 2014 and 2015 cannot be accessed, infrastructures in our schools are neglected, in fact, SUBEB in Ekiti State is totally grounded!”

Speaking further, the SUBEB Chairman said; “Our Governor, Ayodele Fayose responded to UBEC letter on the illegal withdrawal on April 22, 2015, stating that the illegal withdrawal was carried out by Fayemi’s administration. He also pleaded with UBEC to rescind its decision to suspend Ekiti State from accessing FGN-UBE Intervention Fund while

allowing him to investigate the matter.
“Consequent upon the Governor’s directive, a 5-Man Panel headed by the Oluyin of Iyin-Ekiti, Oba Ademola Ajakaiye was set up and the panel established the withdrawal of the N852, 936,713.92 from SUBEB account domiciled at Access Bank, Ado-Ekiti branch consequent upon which Ekiti State was suspended from accessing FGN-UBE fund and also went further to involve the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in the matter if the fund was not returned.

“Report of the panel has been forwarded to UBEC.”

While describing Fayemi’s justification of the illegal withdrawal as ridiculous, Senator Bode Ola said; “Even UBEC, in its letter said the withdrawal constitutes a serious financial crime and also violates Section 11(2) of the UBE Act, 2004.”