Immediate past Ondo State Governor, Olusegun Mimiko, has said that he left nothing less than N20 billion in the accounts of the state government at the time he left office in February.
His statement came as a response to an allegation by the All Progressives Congress, APC, in the state that his administration left a debt of N150 billion, besides the eighth months unpaid salaries and allowances of workers.
He however admitted that salary arrears of the state is now about N20 billion, while he incurred a domestic debt of N53 billion.
The APC publicity secretary, Abayomi Adesanya, in a statement on Wednesday, alleged that Mr. Mimiko left the state in huge debts, including loans which had left the new administration in serious difficulty.
Mr. Mimiko, who spoke through Kayode Akinmade, the former Commissioner for Information, noted that the incumbent governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, should face the business of governance instead of indulging in cheap blackmail against him.
“The claim by the APC is nothing but a lie from the pit of hell,” the statement said.
“The APC Publicity Secretary, Mr Abayomi Adesanya who made the allegation was obviously intimidated by the performance record of the past government and will rather continue with his pre-election falsehood and lie-selling to seek attention, than live with the reality.”
Mr. Mimiko clarified his administration did not enter into any contractual obligation to warrant any increase in the external debt inherited by it when it assumed office eight years ago.
“We were able to reduce the debt profile of the state to $49.9million,” he said.
The former governor explained that the foreign debts were overseas contracted obligations initiated by the two previous governments before his own.
“There are N7.37billion and N7.53billion respectively in the state’s Current and Deposit accounts, the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) account has N1.2billion, while the Paris Club withheld fund account has N3billion,” Mr. Mimiko asserted.
According to him, the state’s foreign accounts have $346,000 and €443,000 respectively.
He admonished the APC to make use of its “foundational” time to enable it gain a good stand so it could withstand the pressure of governance, especially from a sophisticated state like Ondo.
Mr. Mimiko also said the party’s spokesperson should be tutored in the art of modern image building.
Responding the submissions of the former governor, Mr. Adesanya insisted that the Mimiko administration left N150billion as debts for the new APC government.
According to him, the amount did not include eight months salary arrears owned workers.
Mr. Adesanya said he was prepared to challenge Mr. Mimiko to a debate on the state of finances of the state.
“We will continue to point out the bad things done by the immediate past administration for the people to know their real friends and enemies,” he stressed.
He however added that the current administration was determined to develop the state beyond what it is at the moment.