Godwin AJOM, Calabar
Professor Benedict Ayade of Cross River State has dismissed the N100 billion looting allegations levelled against him by the opposition PDP.
Speaking through his deputy chief press secretary Linus Ibogo in Calabar, the governor argued that the allegations were dated within a period April 9, 2015, March 2, 2015 and 2007 when Ayade was not yet sworn-in as governor.
“The PDP and its partner in fabrication, Pointblanknews, alleged that Ayade was a beneficiary of an alleged 10 million naira drawn with a counter cheque from Hally Brown International Ltd in Zenith Bank on April 9, 2015. The question the party failed to answer is, was Ayade governor in April 2015?
Again, the alleged transactions between March 2 and 28, 2015 which the PDP suspected to be money laundering, is another clinical example of self-indictment: Ayade was not governor in March 2015. A PDP governor was still sitting in office. The party owes Cross Riverians details of the said transactions.
“On Leophina Works Ltd, the PDP should ordinarily bury its head in shame. It should, however, explain to Cross Riverians who, between 2007 and May 2015 awarded a contract to construct the current office block housing the State House of Assembly members and which company was the beneficiary of the contract”.
Ayade further added that “a further reinforcement of PDP’s sloth is its ignorance or mischief at peddling falsehood about revenue allocations to states which are published religiously. A thorough research would have saved the party the embarrassment of not realising that between May 2015 and December 31st, 2021, Cross River’s net statutory allocation stood at about 115 billion naira. So, if 100 billion was allegedly stolen, how was the state able to execute projects, clear pensions, pay salaries and meet other financial obligations?
“When the PDP keeps making references to workers retiring and not getting their pensions, it forgets so soon that when Ayade came on May 29, 2015, Cross River was in default of about three years of gratuities and pensions. Against this backdrop, therefore, we advise the party not to forget the age-long wise counsel: He who lives in a glass house should not hurl stones.
Spokesman of the PDP, Mike Ojisi, had requested for explanations on some questionable transactions by the state government as revealed by an online medium.
“Who is or are the owners of Leophina Works Limited? Who transferred N100million on 03/05/2019 to Leophina Works limited as Trustfund Pensions and for what purpose?
“Who is the real owner of Hally Brown International Limited? In 2016, Hally Brown International limited Account 2 No. 707004424 in Access and Leophina Works Limited moved N200million on a concealed exact date, while a similar transaction of N120million was done through same account with the exact date concealed in 2016. Why are these transactions shrouded in secrecy?.
“Who issued 37 different cheques to Eyo Eyo Ita, in 2018, through Account No. 1014841335 in Zenith Bank and why was eight (8) different cheques of N10million each issued to the same person in one day (2/26/18). Who transferred N520million and N280million 11times on 30/11/2018 to non-existent bank accounts referred to as Loan Account with First Bank.
“Further evidence shows that the sum of N2.700billion, N2.250billion, N2.229billion were each transferred 11 times on 23/11/2018 bringing the looting to a total of N24,529,887,131.9billion, just in one day. Can the Ayade Government deny this allegation?
“Why do the government have a penchant for concealing or deleting dates of fraudulent transactions through the state government? What is the government trying to hide?. Can the Governor’s Political vuvuzela explain to Cross Riverians why a Credit entry of N70million which was made into CRSG CONSOLIDATED ACCOUNT NO. 2030459287 on an undisclosed date, later showed a purported reversal entry of N70million still on an undisclosed date?
“On the 28th of July 2017, a debit to CRSG RECURRENT EXP. (FAAC) ACCOUNT NO: 2017445579 of the Sum of N814,337,618.70 was concealed, why? The same happened for the payment/debit on 8/2/2017 in CRSG VAT Account No. 2017445586 suspected to be N805,864,963.44 but diverted.”