Edo PDP Alleges Oshiomhole in Last-minute ‘Fictitious Contracts Payments’
The Edo State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has accused outgoing Governor Adams Oshiomhole of plotting to spend about N5billion few days to his exit from office on Saturday, saying the governor was set to send the sum as supplementary budget to the state House of Assembly.
The party also raised the alarm that the state governor was using his last days to approve payments of sums amounting to about N350 million for bogus and fictitious contracts to the a particular contractor (name withheld).
The party at a media briefing in Benin Sunday and addressed by its chairman, Chief Dan Orbih, also dropped the hint that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has assured the party of unhindered access to inspect voting materials used in the conduct of the September 28 Edo State governorship election as directed by the election tribunal.
Ahead of the planned visit of President Muhammadu Buhari to Edo State on Monday, the PDP chairman asked Governor Oshiomhole to take Mr President on a facility tour of his Iyamho country home, adding that Mr President will be “commissioning a ward of an existing hospital, a private university built with state money and a resurfaced road.”
He said, “We have observed with displeasure the despicable financial actions of the governor. They range from the approval of highly inflated contracts without following procedure of payments and proposed presentation of a supplementary budget of N5billion that he wants to spend in less than eight days he has in office as governor.
“I’m sure this additional request will be presented tomorrow or next tomorrow. It is shocking that a governor, who will soon leave office is asking for such a huge amount of money. This is not the time to plunge Edo to more indebtedness.”
On the suspension of the Onojie of Uromi, Orbih, who is the Esama of Uromi, said, “Let me join Edo people to condemn the purported suspension of the Onogie of Uromi on his alleged support for the PDP’s candidate in the just concluded election. The action of the governor is provocative, vindictive and spiteful.
“The action is aimed at provoking peace-loving Uromi people. Ascension to the throne of Onigie of Uromi is by primogeniture and Oshiomhole cannot suspend the Onogie.
“We will continue to respect the Onogie as the rightful traditional ruler. The only thing he (Oshiomhole) can do is to deny him of his stipend.”
On the contract awards, Orbih displayed vouchers he said were obtained from the governor’s office, saying “vouchers are available, even the one showing the governor’s approval of N387 million for the preparation for the bill of quantity for ten sundry schools, whatever that means.”
He added that as Governor Oshiomhole exits office, plots of land belonging to the state were being shared among loyalists of the governor, pointing that the “PDP government would redress all this when we reclaim our mandate.”