Immediate past Governor of Kwara State, Alh Abdulfatah Ahmed, has admitted to selling of 110 properties of the state saying the sales properties followed due process.
Ahmed stated this in a response to the allegation by AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, the incumbent governor, that he sold government properties to friends and cronies.
AbdulRazaq, during his visit to President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja on Monday, had alleged that the government of Ahmed, his predecessor, sold 110 government properties, including the house meant for the deputy governor.
Accusing his predecessor of mismanaging resources of the state, AbdulRazaq said his deputy now lives in a rented apartment.
In a statement issued by Muyideen Akorede, his media aide, Ahmed absolved his administration of any wrongdoing on the sale of the properties.
He said his administration followed due process in selling government quarters to civil servants, and members of the 7th Kwara state house of assembly on owner-occupier basis after state executive council approval.
He said the said approval also covered other properties disposed off by his administration with the proceed paid into government coffers.
He said the federal government’s monetisation policy, which sought to shed the financial burden of maintaining government-owned properties, motivated his administration’s sale of the assets.
Ahmed also said contrary to Abdulrazak’s claim of misappropriation, the former administration cancelled a bank loan obtained to counterpart fund Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) 2013 grant when the repayment pressured dwindling federal allocation and threatened pressing government obligations.
Regarding salary payment, Ahmed said his administration was up to date in the payment of state civil servants including senior secondary teachers under its remit before he left office.
He said, however, local government councils owed their workers and primary school teachers subsisting salary arrears on account of unstable federal allocation to that tier of government.
The former governor pointed out that the AbdulRazaq Administration’s adoption of the previous administration’s position that salaries and pensions gulped the bulk of federal allocation to the state and local government councils had vindicated the former administration.
AbdulRazaq on January 2 ordered for demolition of the Ile-Arugbo, the Sarakis’ political home in Ilorin, the state capital a development that did not only attract public outcry but also heightened the crisis between the governor and former Senate President Bukola Saraki who is Ahmed’s political benefactor.