By Lere Olayinka
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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ekiti State has accused the State government of siphoning over N1 billion public funds, using rebranding of the State as a conduit pipe.

In a release issued today and signed by the party's Publicity Secretary, Hon. Lekan Adekanbi, the PDP alleged that a sum of N5 billion is being targeted by the Dr. Kayode Fayemi-led government as special fund for the execution of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) plans for the April general elections.

The party alleged that apart from funding the elections in Ekiti, Fayemi has also been saddled with the responsibility of providing funds and “other logistics” for the ACN governorship candidate in Kwara State, Mr. Dele Belgore.

“We are compelled to raise the alarm over the impending looting of Ekiti State treasury by the judiciary installed ACN government, the latest being the phoney branding project on which over N1 billion naira has been earmarked to be siphoned through a Lagos based advertising agency.

“We are also aware that state government fund, totalling N4.05 billion was fixed in two banks. N50 million was fixed in an Ibadan branch of Skye Bank, N3 billion in the Ado-Ekiti branch of the bank and N1 billion in United Bank of Africa (UBA), Ado-Ekiti. Interest on the fund is to be used to offset the bills of Fayemi's legal team.

“Also, in this year's budget, N100 million was earmarked for the maintenance of political thugs under the guise of Youths Volunteer Scheme,” Adekanbi alleged.

While describing the rebranding project as a fraud, the PDP spokesperson said; “The immediate past administration in the State did rebranding that was acceptable to all stakeholders. It did not cost the State up to N10 million as it was done based on goodwill and intellectual knowledge of the people.

“So, if we may ask, what are they rebranding again and of what benefit is the rebranding project to the welfare of Ekiti people, who are already groaning under the yoke of Fayemi's draconian rule? Of what benefit is rebranding to a State where pensioners and workers no longer get their pay as at when due? Of what importance is rebranding to the market men and women who are on the verge of being driven out of the market where they get their daily bread?

“Again, of what need is rebranding to the families of Chief Adeleye Awolumate and others have been murdered by Fayemi's killer squad. Or can any rebranding make meaning to the ACN Chairman, Jide Awe, who was slapped right inside his office and the person who led thugs to assault him now goes about in government official vehicle?

“A government that has cut down funds for procurement of JAMB forms for Ekiti students from N25 million used for the same purpose last year to N7 million sure lacks moral right to embark on rebranding project.”