Governor Ademola Adeleke of Osun State has ordered the immediate suspension of works on the Ilesa water project in Osun East Senatorial District over poor and questionable handling of a $106 million loan secured for the project which was said to have been handled by an of contractors and consultants led by one Tawa Williams.
The Osun State governor also directed Tawa Williams, the lead consultant, to return a N70 million bulletproof jeep in her possession to the government office.
Governor Adeleke, in a press statement, signed and issued in Osogbo by Olawale Rasheed, his Spokesperson, ordered a full-scale probe of the entire project and disbursement of loans secured for the project, especially regarding shoddy handling of the project despite disbursements of N10 billion and $28 million respectively, on the project.
The governor said the suspension of the project co-ordinator was to allow for unhindered review of the loan administration.
BusinessDay reports that Adirective was sequel to the interim report of the State’s Assets Recovery Committee chaired by Bashiru Salami which made recommendations for immediate action to stop further squandering of loans secured to execute the water project.
Read also: I’ll touch lives directly if elected – Ajia
Governor Adeleke frowned at large-scale corruption reflected in the handling of the loan and the water project, an action he said, had denied people of Ilesa and its environs of drinkable water.
“My administration will dig into this matter with all seriousness. The huge fund in question are loans to be repaid. We have a sacred duty to ensure accountability and transparency in the handling of the fund and the project”, Adeleke said.
The Assets Recovery Committee had submitted an interim report which revealed an ongoing large-scale pilfering of the procured loans while the project recorded no progress commesurate with reported expenditure.
According to the interim report of Salami-led Committee, the Islamic Development Bank agreed to fund the project to the tune of $65 million while the Federal Government provided $41.94 million.
“So far, a total of $27.073 million has been expended from the IDB loan of $65 million, leaving a balance of the sum of $37.926 million. However, from the Federal Government loan of $41.94 million which the Consultant had converted to N12 billion, the sum of N10 billion had been purportedly spent on the project, leaving a balance of N2 billion”, the Committee reported.
The Committee noted that despite the huge sums of $27.073 million and N10 billion of the state resources (repayable loans) already spent so far, the Ilesa water project is not yet functional and the good people of Ilesa are yet to access any water.