The governor said that his predecessor, Gbenga Daniel, left behind a debt of N87 billion.
The Ogun State Governor, Ibikunle Amosun, on Tuesday disclosed that his administration has so far borrowed N26 billion just as he insisted that his predecessor, Gbenga Daniel, left behind a debt of N87 billion.
Mr. Amosun was sworn-in as governor on May 29, 2011.
He spoke at the stakeholders’ meeting held in Obas Complex, Oke Mosan, Abeokuta explaining that from what his government borrowed, he had repaid about N11 billion.
Mr. Amosun added that his predecessor had signed so many cheques in his last day in office and that he, Mr. Amosun had had opportunity to cancel those cheques but then decided not to.
Mr. Amosun queried the debt profile announced by Mr. Daniel at the twilight of his administration which was put at about N50 billion saying that the figure was as at March 31st, 2011 and not when he handed over the leadership of the state.
“When we came in, we talked about the debt that we met. What they handed over to us when we came in shows N49.6 billion, that was as of March 31st. Of course, we were not sworn in until May 29. Even the day they were going, they signed several cheques that had to be stopped. But we didn’t even think about that.
“Even as we speak, so many people said they have been given government guarantee which means that in the event of default, we have to pay. When we added all of those, it was N87 billion that we met. And I mentioned it.
“The only reason why our people voted for me is because they believe I can effect that positive change so, we should not be talking about it. That is why we are focused. We want to focus on what we are doing,” he said.
The governor disclosed that the Internal Generated Revenue, IGR, of the state has grown to N3.2 billion during his regime. He said the last administration also made its highest IGR of N730 million through taxation.
He said the growth in the IGR has given his government the opportunity to embark on so many developmental projects and has further afforded them the opportunity to borrow and pay back the debt.
“It is not that we have the money, we don’t have it. I told myself, we need to grow our IGR, if we grow our IGR, we can borrow and pay back and I want to report that the total money that we have was borrowed. Of course, we met some loans on ground, we renegotiated and majority of them agreed with us,” Mr. Amosun said.
“The money we borrowed since we came was N26 billion. The first loan we took was in December, 2011 and if you look at that time till today, it will be about 14 months and between those months we have paid back a total of N10.774 billion.
“On a monthly basis, we pay all of our obligations and that is the only reason why our bankers know that we are serious and know what we are doing,” he added.