Ekiti State Governor, Mr. Ayo Fayose, has ordered the reduction of tuition fees being paid by students of the Ekiti State University from N50,000 to N30,000. The governor also directed that the students could pay the fees twice.
Fayose, who gave the order on a radio/television programme entitled: “Meet Your Governor,” in Ado Ekiti last Friday, said his administration would also ensure an enabling atmosphere for teaching and learning in state-owned institutions.
On the financial challenges facing the state, Fayose said apart from the global economic meltdown, the former governor Kayode Fayemi’s administration excessive borrowing to fund projects with little or no economic value aggravated the Ekiti situation.
“On the day of my inauguration, I gave an overview of what the debt profile of the state was. Later, we have discovered a lot of needless loans taken by that government on non-viable projects.
“For instance, the Civic Centre they started in Ado-Ekiti, they have committed N1.2 billion into it and the contractors are saying another N1.2 billion is needed to complete it. Over N2 billion was spent on Ikogosi Warm Spring Resort and was given to their cronies to manage, as at now, less than N10 million has accrued as income from it.
“They said I have been given some money on federal roads, which they worked on; that is a lie. The Federal Government is saying it will not reimburse Ekiti because the Fayemi administration did not take permission to work on those roads.
“We are just liaising with them to get the situation redressed. No kobo has also been given to the state from Ecological Funds,” he said.
On the frosty relationship between him and the All Progressives Congress (APC) members of the House of Assembly, the governor accused the lawmakers of not putting Ekiti first in their considerations.
“Adewale Omirin, as the speaker, did not attend my inauguration ceremony. After the event, we met and talked and we agreed to work together. They asked that their monthly running grant of N48 million be paid in full, even when other agencies have theirs slashed by 60 per cent or stopped totally because of poor finances, we still gave them their full grant,” he said.
On the retirement of some permanent secretaries, Fayose said the performance of some were below expectation, while one, according to him allegedly, connived with the former administration to pay out more than N1 billion in the last four weeks of Fayemi’s leadership of the state.
“A situation where we have 36 permanent secretaries to 14 active ministries does not make sense and we are not going to allow any waste. The former governor had 104 special advisers/special assistants and they were given official cars at the expense of the state. By the time they left, most of the cars were not paid for and they left with them,” the governor added.