Ajimobi, Oyo PDP trade words over missing official vehicles
By Sarafa Ibrahim, Ibadan
The People’s Democratic Party in Oyo State and a former governor of the State, Abiola Ajimobi on Sunday exchanged words over official vehicles allegedly being in possession of aides of the immediate past governor.
Ajimobi, who was a two-term governor on the platform of All Progressives Congress (APC) spoke at a launching organised by the Ibadan Elders’ Forum in honour of his eight years in power.
The former governor while speaking, chided his successor, Seyi Makinde, saying it is high time he faced the serious business of governance than lament on mundane issues like “former government officials carting away cars or government properties.”
Ajimobi warned that the euphoria with which Makinde assumed office was bound to wane should he fail to kick off governance, ensure security and development, and continue to uplift mundane issues of cars being taken away from government pool.
“Recently, I heard them talk about government officials carting away money, is that the issue that they should face now? Those of you who have his ears should tell him. What we have done, we have done. His days of governance are already counting down.
“Every journey begins with one step and all journeys will end with one step. What has a beginning will surely have an end. When we assumed office, they were singing about us using eight years and not long, it was over. Similarly, Seyi Makinde assumed office with a lot of euphorias; it will soon be over too. He should begin work,” he had said.
It would be recalled that the Makinde-led government had raised alarm that political functionaries of the immediate past government were in possession of government vehicles, asking them to return the same to government transport pool.
But in a swift reaction by the PDP, Oyo State chapter, through a statement made available to journalists in Ibadan by its State Publicity Secretary, Akeem Olatunji, described former governor’s defense as ‘shameful’ act, advising him to stop playing to the gallery.
Olatunji berated Ajimobi for defending his aides, whom were alleged carted away some properties belonging to the State government.
He said, “It was shameful to hear Ajimobi describing the monumental theft of government property by some persons as a ‘mundane issue’.
“We read with serious consternation, comments credited to the former Governor of Oyo state, Senator Ajimobi, especially in respect of the dissolved local governments and the missing cars belonging to the state government.
“While we are very much aware that the state government is dealing with the twin issues with all the seriousness, we are, however, appalled by the statement credited to the former Governor, which amounts to a father attempting to pamper a thieving child.
“We know that it is not in the character of statesmen to pander towards the axis of evil and pamper wrongdoing by whoever and that is why we are saddened at this attempt by Ajimobi to a man of give justification to allegation of theft.
“We believe that having served the two constitutionally guaranteed terms of office as Governor of Oyo state, Senator Ajimobi should remain grateful to the people of Oyo state.
“There cannot be any ambiguity in the statement credited to the new Government on the issue of cars taken away by operatives of the last administration.
“Some officials of the government led by Ajimobi refused to return cars and other items belonging to the state after their tour of duty. That cannot be a matter to be celebrated or described as “mundane” by anyone.
“Should we classify theft as mundane because it was perpetrated by some political “demi gods” who happened to serve a previous government?
“What is expected of Ajimobi is to prevail on his loyalists to return any property belonging to the state they might have illegally kept aside.
“Besides his defence of the missing vehicles, Senator Ajimobi has also been gallivanting round the city of Ibadan in recent times as if in some victory laps. He has made statements to the effect that he turned around the state and has also been offering words of advice to Governor Seyi Makinde. We congratulate him for the alleged feat.”