A Socio-Economic Group in Osun State, called Transparency and Accountability Group(TAG) has demanded detailed reports from Osun Lawmakers at the National Assembly over what it called “promotion of projects under phantom names devoid of relevance to government institution.”
TAG’s spokesperson, Comrade Ayo Ologun in an open letter signed and published on his facebook page and seen by TOS News, titled: 2021 ZIP OSUN REPRESENTATIVES AND THE QUESTIONS ABOUT THEIR PROJECTS-TAG, having reviewed the Zonal Intervention Projects of Members of the House of Representatives and Senators across the state alleged that, the Lawmakers are promoting phony projects under the phantom names and practically irrelevant to institutions of government.
A letter personally written to one of the Senators, Ajibola Bashiru dated February 22nd was also seen by TOS correspondent.
While speaking with TOS News in a telephone interview on Thursday, TAG’s spokesperson, Ayo Ologun said, the effort was targeted at making the Lawmakers understand that TAG’s attention is on them and will continue to let the people know how they are being represented.
The Lawmakers are: Hon. Taiwo Oluga, Irewole/Ayedade/Isokan federal Constituency; Hon. Lawrence Babatunde Ayeni, Ilesa East/Ilesha West/Atakunmosa East/ Atakunmosa West; Hon. Afolabi Rasheed Olalekan, Ifelodun/Odo-otin/Boripe; Hon. Bukola Oyewo, Irepodun/Olorunda/Orolu/Osogbo; Hon. Yinusa Amobi, Ayedire/Iwo/Olaoluwa; Hon. Femi Fakeye, Boluwaduro/Ila/Ifedayo; Hon. Wole Oke, Obokun/Oriade; Hon. Bamidele Salam,Ede North/Ede South/Egbedore/Ejigbo Local Government; Hon. Ajilesoro, Ife Central/Ife East/Ife North/Ife South; Sen. Ajibola Bashiru, Osun Central Senatorial district; Sen. Adelowo Oriolowo, Osun West and Sen Francis Fadahunsi, Osun East Senatorial district.
The group’s findings and questions are below:
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES MEMBERS
Hon. Taiwo Oluga – Ayedaade/Irewole/Isokan
Training and empowerment of youths in modern farming techniques in Irewole Federal Constituency, Osun State – (40,000,000) – Department of Agriculture and Rural Development
Construction and Rehabilitation of Secondary Schools in some selected rural communities in Irewole Federal Constituency – (34,000,000) -Department of Agriculture and Rural Development
Supply of agricultural equipments for farmers in Irewole Federal constituency – (50,000,000) – Federal College of Agriculture, Ishiagu
“Hon. Taiwo Oluga needs to enlighten us on the relationship between Construction and Rehabilitation of Secondary Schools in some selected rural communities in Irewole Federal Constituency priced at 34,000,000 and the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. A Universal Basic Education Commission exists to develop Basic Education in both rural and urban communities, why ignore this important commission to place a project under an irrelevant agency?
“She will also have to enlighten TAG and the public, on the reason behind her placing a project worth 34,000,000 (Supply of agricultural equipments for farmers in Irewole Federal constituency) under the Federal College of Agriculture, Ishiagu. We see an interesting confusion here. The project for construction and rehabilitation of classrooms is placed under an Agricultural Agency, but a project for supply of Agricultural equipment is placed under a Federal Training Institute. A comic relief this must be. There are several Agricultural Research Institutes and Agencies in South-West Nigeria, but Hon. Oluga overlooked all of that for one in the South-Eastern part of the country. We seek to know why.
“We also will love to understand, the details of the Construction and Rehabilitation Project that Hon. Oluga nominated for 34,000,000. Does this cost cover construction of a block of three classrooms? Is it repainting of a few classrooms in some selected schools? Why use such vague language to nominate a project carrying so much financial worth?”
Hon. Lawrence Babatunde Ayeni – Ilesha East/Ilesha West/Atakumosa East/Atakumosa West
Supply and distribution of empowerment tools for rural farmers in Ilesha Federal Constituency, Osun State – (40,000,000) – Fed. Coll. of Produce Inspection and Tech, Kano
Skills acquisition for rural cooperators in Atakumosa Federal Constituency, Osun State – (40,000,000) – Fed. Coop. College, Ibadan
Capacity building for youths and women in agribusiness in ilesha east and west fed const – (44,000,000) – Bioresources Development Centre, Ilesha
“We first must commend Hon. LB Ayeni for being honourable enough to place one of his ZIPs in an Agency that operates within his Federal Constituency. While this is commendable, it sharpky contrasts with is decision to place a project for Supply and distribution of Empowerment tools to rural farmers, under a Federal College in Kano. Does the Bioresources Development Centre not have the capacity to execute supply and distribution of empowerment items to farmers?
“We also will love to understand what Hon. LB Ayeni is planning to do with a 40,000,000 training programme for “Rural Cooperators”. Who are the Cooperators? What is the capacity of the training that makes it as capital intensive as 40,000,000? Does this not give him away as one trying to make unmerited returns from a project whose nature is such that his constituents cannot trace execution?”
Hon. Afolabi Rasheed Olalekan – Ifelodun/Odo-otin/Boripe
Procurement of agricultural equipments for farmers in Ifelodun/Boripe/Odo-otin Federal constituency – (20,000,000) – Fed. Coll. of Produce Inspection and Tech, Kano
Supply of Tricycles (Keke Napep) for Youths in Ifelodun/Boripe/Odo-otin Federal constituency – (34,000,000) – NDE
Supply of Empowerment items for youths in Ifelodun/Odo-otin/Boripe Fed. Const. – (30,000,000) – Industrial Arbitration Panel
Supply of empowerment items for youths in Ifelodun/Odo-otin/Boripe Fed. Const. – (30,000,000) – BCDA
“We ask dear Hon. Afolabi Rasheed to tell the public, why he thinks a project for supply of Empowerment items should or can be executed by the Industrial Arbitration Panel. Is the panel a procurement Agency to begin with? Do they have any business with procurement contracts? What is his motive, really?
“We also must ask Hon. Afolabi, why he thinks the contract for procurement of Agricultural Equipments for farmers should be under a Federal College in Kano! Of all the Federal Agricultural Research Institutes in Ibadan, Oyo State, he could fine none with the capacity to execute a project of this nature? Again we ask, what is the motive? To receive kickbacks? To get contracts awarded to cronies?”
Hon. Bukola Oyewo – Irepodun/Olorunda/Orolu/Osogbo
Strategic Empowerment of market women cooperative groups in Irepodun/Olorunda/Orolu/Osogbo Federal constituency – (50,000,000) – Fed. Coop. College, Ibadan
Supply of Industrial shed to vulnerable market women in Irepodun/Orolu/Olorunda/Osogbo Federal constituency – (29,000,000) – Industrial Arbitration Panel
Green technology training and deployment for youths and women in agro technology, in Irepodun/Orolu/Olorunda/Osogbo Fed. Const. – (45,000,000) –
Aquatic Bioresources Centre, Tunari
“Of three projects, Hon. Bukola Oyewo placed one under an Arbitration panel and another under a Centre in Taraba State! Under what conditions of transparency and probity, will a Representative place a contract for supply off sheds to market women under an Industrial Arbitration Panel? Does this occur to Hon. Oyewo like the correct thing to do?”
Hon. Yinusa Amobi – Ayedire/Iwo/Ola-Oluwa
Manpower development of unemployed in aquaculture and value chain capacity building in Iwo/Ayedire/Ola-oluwa Federal Constituency – (50,000,000) – Nigerian Institute of Oceanography and Marine research Lagos
Practical training of youths and graduates in freshwater fisheries and development in aquaculture and value chain capacity building in Ayedire/Iwo/Ola-oluwa Federal constituency – (50,000,000) – Nigerian Institute of Oceanography and Marine research Lagos
Provision of solar-powered boreholes in Ayedire/Iwo/Ola-Oluwa Fed constituency – (24,000,000) – National Commission for Refugees
“While we consider that the agencies under which Hon. Amobi placed his project nominations are relevant to execution of the projects, we are however concerned that he voted a total of 100,000,000 to two training projects, under the same Agency. The first training being aquaculture and the second being Fresh water fisheries and development in aquaculture, we can only wonder what the difference is between these two projects and why a single concept has been duplicated.
Contract duplication only point at one thing – shady practice. We hope that Hon. Yinusa Amobi will clarify very quickly, why he did this.”
Hon. Olufemi Fakeye – Boluwaduro/Ifedayo/Ila
Reconstruction of Orangun palace museum, Ila Orangun – (104,000,000) – UBEC
“We are trying to come to terms with Hon. Fakeye’s decision to place the project for construction of a Palace Museum under the Universal Basic Education Commission. There is a National Commission for Museums and Monuments, with an office in Osogbo, but he chose an Agency that has no business constructing Museums.
“Aside this decision being wrong in terms of Agency relevance, we also consider it obnoxious that his only ZIP for the year 2021 is fixed on construction of a Palace Museum. What are the dividends that his constituents will derive from his representation in 2021? “
Hon. Oluwole Oke – Obokun/Oriade
Empowerment of youths, artisans and women in Obokun/Oriade Federal Constituency – (50,000,000) – National Commission for Refugees
Provision of Agricultural products to farmers in Obokun/Oriade Federal constituency – (43,000,000) – National Commission for Refugees
Ultramodern training complex for Radiographers Registration Board of Nigeria,in Esa Oke, Obokun/Oriade Fed. Const. – (20,000,000) – NPC
“While we are not favorably disposed to the idea of expending a major chunk of a Legislator’s ZIP on training and empowerment as has become cliche, we wait to understand the intention of Hon. Oluwole Oke, in nominating two empowerment projects under the National Commission for Refugees.”
Hon. Bamidele Salam – Ede North/Ede South/Egbedore/Ejigbo
Provision of empowerment programmes for youths and women of Ede North, Ede South, Egbedore and Ejigbo Federal Constituency – (24,000,000) – NPC
Provision of empowerment programs in Ede North, Ede South, Egbedore and Ejigbo Fed. Const. – (50,000,000) – National Lotteries Trust Fund
Rural electrification project in Ede North, Ede South, Egbedore, Ejigbo Fed. Const. – (50,000,000) – National Boundary Commission
“We consider empowerment programmes too be quite questionable, but it becomes more worrisome when it is nominated for execution under a Lottery Trust Fund! We understand that the Mission of the National Lottery Trust Fund is “To strategically complement the efforts of government in improving the quality of life for all Nigerians through the investment of lottery funds in innovative projects that responds to the need of our people.” We do not see any correlation between the mission of this Agency and the project placed there by Hon. Salam.
“We also find worrisome, the decision by Hon. Salam to place yet another empowerment programme under the National Population Commission. There is also the question of why he overlooked the Rural Electrification Agency, to place a rural electrification project under the National Boundary Commission. Are these distortions not pointers to possible diversion of funds that will be hard to trace? Does the appearance of Empowerment projects under two different irrelevant Agencies not appear like a gravitation toward personal enrichment?”
Hon. Abimbola Ajilesoro – Ife Central/Ife East/Ife North/Ife South
Supply of empowerment materials for women in Ife Federal constituency – (32,000,000) – BCDA
Grant for small scale businesses for Ife Central and Ife North Fed. Const. – (46,000,000) – SMEDAN
Grant for small scale businesses for Ife East and Ife South Fed. Const. – (46,000,000) – SMEDAN
“Hon. Ajilesoro seems to be so given to empowerment projects, seeing as he expended all of his projects on one empowerment or the other. We wonder why he even decided to split the two projects placed under SMEDAN when they both are Grants for Small Scale Businesses.
Our question to him is simple – do the people of Ife Central/Ife East/Ife North/Ife South Federal Constituency not deserve better?”
1. Sen. Ajibola Basiru – Osun Central
Training on good Agricultural practices for sustainable farming in Osun Central Senatorial District – (60,000,000) – Federal College of Agriculture, Moore Plantation, Ibadan.
Provision of solar street lights to farmers’ communities in Osun Central Senatorial district – (140,000,000) – Federal College of Agriculture, Moore plantation, Ibadan.
Provision of solar-powered streetlights to selected cooperators’ communities in Osun Central Senatorial District – (167,000,000) – Federal Cooperative College, Ibadan
Provision of solar-powered boreholes for selected cooperators’ communities in Osun Central Senatorial District- (60,000,000) – Federal Cooperative College, Ibadan
Total – 427,000,000
“From the above, it can be seen that Sen. Ajibola Basiru has nominated a whooping Three Hundred and Seven Million Naira (307,000,000) to “Provision of Solar streetlights” alone. More worrisome is the fact that the beneficiaries earmarked are vague. We are compelled to ask the Distinguished Senator, where are the Farmers’ and Cooperators’ Communities in his Senatorial District? What is a Cooperator Community, in fact, what further worries us, is the fact that in 2020, Sen. Ajibola Basiru nominated the total sum of Two Hundred and Thirteen Million (213,000,000) for just two items – 50,000,000 on “Capacity Building for Cooperators, ICT, Entrepreneurship, Management, Cooperate Law, Values and Studies in Osun Central Senatorial District” and 163,000,000 on “Supply and Distribution of Empowerment tools for Trained Cooperators in Osun Central Senatorial District.
“Another worry we must express, is Sen. Ajibola Basiru’s obsession with the Federal Cooperative College Ibadan. In 2020, his 213,000,000 was placed fully under this Institution. In 2021, he has placed a total of 227,000,000 under the same institution. We wonder why this is so, especially for projects like Installation of Solar Street Lights, Provision of Empowerment items and Provision of solar-powered boreholes.
“In conclusion, are there no more beneficial projects to expend such huge funds on, other than streetlights? At what cost per unit will the streetlights be installed that will justify those figures? Are streetlights so pressing where several locations in Osun Central Senatorial District require Access roads and Electrification?”
2. Sen. Adelere Oriolowo – Osun West
Provision and installation of integrated solar streetlight in selected areas of Osun West Senatorial District – (40,000,000) – Fed. College of Produce Inspection and Technology, Kano
Community support Agric programs in selected communities in Osun West Senatorial District – (50,000,000) – NCAM, Ilorin
Construction of 1 block of 2 classrooms in selected area of Osun West Senatorial District – (20,000,000) – UBEC
Provision of instructional materials such as notebooks in selected area of Osun West Senatorial district – (50,000,000) – National Commission for Refugees
Supply of sewing machines and grinding machines to some selected areas in Osun West Senatorial District – (30,000,000) – Labour
Provision of all in one solar light in Eleyele area, Osun West Sen. District – (10,000,000) – Aquatic bio-resources centre, Tunari
Community support programs for selected communities in Osun West Senatorial District – (40,000,000) – National Boundary Commission
Total – 240,000,000
“There are loads of questions we are compelled to ask the Senator representing Osun West Senatorial District, Sen. Adelere Oriolowo.
“First on this long list of questions concerns the two projects, amounting to 50,000,000 that he nominated to Institutions in Kano and Taraba States. Are there no Ministries, Agencies or Departments of the Federal Government possessing the capacity to execute these projects? Do we have to remind him that Solar Streetlights can be fabricated and installed by the Works arm of the Federal Polytechnic, Ede?
“Second on our long list of questions to Sen. Oriolowo is the meaning of “Community support Agric programs in selected communities in Osun West Senatorial District” with an allocation of 50,000,000? How is this any different from “Community support programs for selected communities in Osun West Senatorial District” with an allocation of 40,000,000? Why is splitting his ZIPs into so many intangible, but similar directions?
“We also wish to ask Distinguished Senator Oriolowo why he is specifically providing Solar streetlights worth 10,000,000 to Eleyele Area? Where is Eleyele Area in the whole of Osun West?
“TAG seeked to clarify the other instructional materials added to “Notebooks” to make up a budget of 50,000,000 for Provision of Instructional Materials under the National Commission for Refugees. If it will be just Notebooks, we wait to know the quantity of Notebooks that will make up a budget of 50,000,000.”
3. Sen. Francis Fadahunsi – Osun East Senatorial District
Provision of strategic empowerment program for people of Osun East Sen. district – (55,000,000) – SMEDAN
Training on entrepreneurship and grants for youths and women in Osun East Sen. district – (50,000,000) – SMEDAN
ICT and solar energy training and empowerment for youths in Osun East Senatorial District – (50,000,000) – NPC
Purchase of tricycles, motorcycles and sewing machines to empower youths and women in Osun East Senatorial District – (75,000,000) – National Commission for Refugees
Total – 230,000,000
“Sen. Francis Fadahunsi tried to keep things very brief as he concentrated his 230,000,000 ZIP allocation on just four items. We are constrained to ask however, why in the 21st century, a Senator thinks purchase of Motorcycles, Tricycles and Sewing Machines as items of empowerment, is a wise economic decision? A whooping 75,000,000 to be spent partly on motorcycles that are being banned in more urbane Cities in the country? Should a Leader not be more visionary?
“We also must ask what the true meaning of “Strategic Empowerment” is, that will make it attract a 55,000,000 allocation when there is already a needless 75,000,000 for empowerment of youths and women? Is this his attempt at duplicating the same project with the intent of getting shady benefits?”
Speaking with TOS News in a telephone interview, spokesperson of the group, Comrade Ayo Ologun said, the information was received from department of project and programmes, Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, and that thee social-economic group will not relent in demanding accountability from political leaders in the state.
“One of the factors that is contributing to poor governance is ignorance on the side of the electorates who don’t know what their political leaders are doing. As a socio-economic group, we’ve made our findings and will not relent in our effort to continue to demand accountability and transparency from every political leader in Osun,” he said.
Reacting, Senior Legislative to Sen. Ajibola Bashiru, Bisi Babalola in a rejoinder titled and dated 4th March “RE:2020 ZONAL INTERVENTION PROJECT” said the letter lack requisite knowledge of where to request for the information purportedly sought.
“Traditionally, we would not have bothered to write a reply to your letter under reference as it lack of requisite knowledge of where to request for the information purportedly sought. However, since unfounded request of the nature contained in your letter has become a recurring decimal, we are of the opinion that you need to be educated on implementation and the working of Zonal Intervention Projects.
“You are advised to get a copy of 2020 Appropriation Act as all your requests as well as the implementing agencies are contained therein. You are further advised to contact the Department of Projects and Programmes domiciled in the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation for more details with regard to the request in your letter under reference.
“On a final note, please be guided that we will not entertain any further frivolous request from your group,” said Bisi Babalola.
In his response to the TAG’s letter to the Senators, titled: 2021 ZONLA INTERVENTION PROJECTES: THE UPCOMING PROFLIGACY OF OSUN FEDERAL LAW MAKERS, Media Assistant to Senator Francis Fadahunsi, Sam Segun Progress spoke with TOS News on Thursday and said that, the letter “is an unnecessary distraction that any serious law makers should ignore.”
“2021 budget is not in force yet, so its premature to talk about it; he should wait until he is sure of a kobo is released. Calling 75million shows ignorance burn out of bitterness. It’s an unnecessary distraction that any serious law maker should ignore,” he said.
Hon. Taiwo Oluga, Hon. Bamidele Salam and other lawmakers are yet to respond to the texts sent to them for comment.