Akeredolu’s Aide Reveals How APC Leaders Diverted School Feeding Money In Ondo

Oluwarotimi Akeredolu

Bunmi Ademosu, Special Adviser on Multilateral and Intergovernmental Affairs to Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of Ondo state, has said the Home Grown School Feeding Programme of the federal government failed in the state because the funds meant for the programme were diverted.

The programme was launched by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo in the state in April 2018.

But most of the cooks engaged to provide meals for pupils in public primary schools across the state failed to show up in these schools

Ademosu, who spoke on Wednesday at an event organized by the Sunshine Integrity Movement (SIM) in Akure, the state capital, said the people given the contracts were members of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

She said the monitoring team of the federal government came to the state and discovered that the pupils were not benefiting from the programme as expected.

The special adviser disclosed that the federal government had asked the state to refund about N38 million from those who were awarded the contracts but failed to provide meals for the pupils.

“The Federal government doesn’t give funds to the state for the programme. This is because when we started the programme, those who got the contracts did not even cook any food for the children.

“Some of these contractors, after collecting about N150,000 for twenty days, would give N10,000 to those people they hired for the cooking. There is nothing this amount can do.

”The federal government brought their monitoring team to the state and we were found wanting. We have been asked to repay N38 million. That is what we are doing now before they will start giving money again to the state for the programme.

“Some of these politicians will stay in Akure and get the contracts to cook for pupils in Ode-Aye. Some will be in Owo and get the contracts for pupils in Akoko. At the end of the day, they will not even leave their bases after getting money. These people are returning the money now,” she said.

But the state chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said it was not enough to refund the money, asking the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate the allegation and bring the perpetrators to book.

In a statement by its director of publicity, Zadok Akintoye, the PDP said: “Our attention has been drawn to a shocking revelation credited to the Special Adviser to the Ondo State Governor on Multilateral and Intergovernmental Affairs, Mrs Bunmi Ademosun, wherein she alleged that members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ondo state, diverted and illegally converted funds meant for the school feeding program in the state.

“This revelation remains a deeply upsetting one which underscores the callousness of those given the opportunity to administer public funds and contravenes laid down rules for public fund administration.

“We are compelled as citizens of this great state to draw the attention of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to immediately probe and investigate this dire allegations.

“While the Special Assistant to the governor alluded to the fact that some of those who have committed these crimes may have been clandestinely returning the stolen funds, we believe that such crimes, which is in direct contravention of the law must be thoroughly investigated and the perpetrators brought to book.

“Such vindictive acts of wickedness against children if left unpunished will further embolden those who have taken liberty for license with our commonwealth to do more.

“Our party, once again, remains resolute in our objective of providing a voice for the people and would therefore keep demanding action from the Nigeria Police and EFCC while awaiting diligent investigation as demanded by the law.”

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