Ikpeazu’s alleged N24 Billion fund,Otti refutes claims …says Ikpeazu Govt left 191.2 billion debt

 

Abia State Governor, Dr Alex Otti has refuted claims of alleged funds left behind in the state government’s coffers by his predecessor, insisting that the Dr Okezie Ikpeazu government left a whooping 191.2billon in debts instead.

 

Abia State Governor, Dr Alex Otti has refuted claims by his predecessor which alledged that the past administration left 24. Billion naira in the state government’s coffers insisting that the Dr Okezie Ikpeazu government left a whooping 191.2billon in debts instead.

 

Recall that the past administration in a statement signed by an ex-media aide to the former Governor, Ikechukwu Iroha, had claimed that the former Ikpeazu had left N6 billion in the government’s coffer,in addition to a
N24 billion through the Nigeria Governors’ Forum as part of a total of N48 billion standing to the credit of the state which he alledged was earned under the watch of Dr Ikpeazu.”

 

But, the Special Adviser to Governor Otti on Finance, Mazi Mike Akpara refuted the claims saying “the Ikpeazu administration did not leave any N24 Billion in the account of Abia State Government as falsely claimed”.

Mazi Akpara who gave the shocking revelation while briefing journalists at Government House Umuahia in company of the Accountant General of the state, Mrs Njum Onyemenam,described the allegation as “false, offensive and provocative claims”.

See also  Information Commissioner Tasks ANPC Staff to Reciprocate Government's Gesture

 

He said that instead of leaving behind assets for the state, the former administration left behind “humongous financial and physical liabilities in key institutions of state” as well as unpaid workers salaries, pensions and gratuities.

 

The Governor’s aide further stated that the $200 million and $ 50 million dollars the previous government claimed they left for the new administration are loans they were pursuing which is yet to crystalize.

He explained the loan balance of the state in various banks across the state as at May 28th 2023 amounted to a total of 77.9 Billion naira in debts.

According to the Special Adviser on Finance domestic debts in salaries amounted to 18.1 Billion, Pension arrears 21.2 Billion, Gratuity Arrears,27 Billion, Contractors Arrears 4.5 Billion, Domestic debt arrears, 71 Billion while External debts amounted 42.2 Billion which he said amounted to a total liability of N191.2 Billion.

Akpara said: “If the claims by the Ikpeazu administration left if Ikpeazu had the billions he claimed to have left behind for the Otti led-government in April and May, why did he not pay workers and pensioners before leaving office, since Governor Otti just took over from.him on the 29th of May 2023?

 

“The Alex Otti led-government woke up to the shocking news of the several billions of naira allegedly left behind for the Alex Otti led-government by the former government of Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu.

See also  Gov. Otu Greets Muslim Faithful, Calls for Kindness and Generosity

“We waited to see if Ikpeazu or his Spokespersons would refute the false and offensive claims, but to no avail, rather we saw astronomical increase in the number of his allies and former aides circulating the Fake News with the intention to misrepresent facts and deceive the public, especially workers and pensioners whom he treated with utterr disdain and disregard.

“To put the record straight and disabuse the minds of those who may have been misled, we have decided to address Abians and state that the Summary of ABSG Balances with different banks as at 28th May 2023.

“For the records, the public should note thus:Outside the humongous financial liabilities left behind by the Ikpeazu-led government, they also left physical liabilities in all our key institutions. For example;, our University Teaching Hospital lost accreditation for the first time in history.

“Our only state Polytechnic also lost accreditation. The regulatory authorities predicated their action against these institutions on Non-payment of salaries , lack of Equipment and Lack of Infrastructure.

“Poor internal generation of revenue, with the little they generated frittered away in payment to consultants for no added value. They pay as much as 20% which is highly unethical.

See also  Abia Assembly assures Uzodike's Swearing-in; Issues Innoson Motors a fortnight ultimatum

 

“Doctors who have been on strike since February 2023 just called off their strike, and they emphatically stated that they based their decision on their conviction that Governor Otti would solve the problem that necessitated the strike action.

“If Ikpeazu is trying to preempt anti corruption agencies by making such provocative false claims, he should know that they work with facts and figures, therefore even if he runs into the APC to seek refuge as he is planning to do, these anti corruption agencies would pursue and bring him to justice from there”,

Chief Press Secretary to the Governor,Mr. Kazie Uko and the Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Publicity,Ferdinand Ekeoma witnessed the briefing.