The Ekiti State government has described as falsehood and dishonesty, claim by the 19 All Progressives Congress, APC lawmakers that they have not been paid their entitlements.
Governor Ayodele Fayose had claimed that his government had paid the APC lawmakers their outstanding salaries and allowances, but the APC legislators in a statement by Speaker Adewale Omirin’s Special Adviser on Media, Wole Olujobi, said the report was based on rumours and unfounded allegations.
Olujobi while querying the report said it was “motivated by blackmail. Let us even agree without conceding that we were paid our lawful entitlements, what favour does the governor do to us by that after illegally cutting short our tenure by seven months and putting us in harrowing inconveniences in addition to his brazen rape on the Constitution of Nigeria?
“Must payment of our legal entitlements prevent us from defending the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which we swore to protect?
However, the State Government in a statement issued on Sunday by the Commissioner for Finance, Toyin Ojo, claimed that the lawmakers duly acknowledged receipt of cheques for their payments last week Wednesday through his office.
The government said it was necessary to clarify the matter because the lawmakers claimed Fayose had placed an embargo on their bank accounts and did not pay them their entitlements.
The statement read, “We would have remained silent in deference to the agreement reached at the last Monday meeting in Akure that all parties should maintain silence on the outcome of the meeting, especially because the lawmakers said they do not want their leaders to know the outcome of the meeting.
“However, since the lawmakers have chosen not to abide by this agreement by first issuing press statement to deny and reveal what was discussed in the meeting, and now going to the press to say that they have not received any payment, the government does not have any other option than to tell the public the truth and set the records straight.
“The government is by this press statement putting the records straight since the money paid to the lawmakers belong to Ekiti people.”
“We will want to keep our fingers crossed and we wish to caution the lawmakers to adhere strictly to the spirit of the agreements.
“Governor Fayose’s good gesture, aimed at ensuring peace in the state should not be abused.”
But Olujobi maintained that the APC lawmakers had not been paid, stressing that “This face-saving tactic after a hatchet job gone awry in the media has failed. We had earlier said that the governor offered to pay our entitlements in exchange for our resumption of duty but we refused.
“We insist that we have not been paid because we have not received payment alerts. Knowing who Fayose is, we won’t believe in any payment until we see payment alerts.”