MINISTER of Mines and Steel Development and the former Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, on Tuesday failed to appear before the Ekiti State House of Assembly to defend himself against the allegations that his administration misappropriated N852m Universal Basic Education Commission fund.
The Assembly had at its plenary presided over by Speaker Kola Oluwawole on March 9, in a resolution pursuant to Sections 128 (1)(2) and 129(c) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), ordered the Minister of Solid Mineral to appear before it on March 22.
Instead, Fayemi through his Personal Assistant, Tolulope Ibitola, wrote the Assembly, saying he could not honour the invitation “due to prior scheduled state engagements”.
He wrote, “The minister has however asked that I should draw your attention to the fact that all matters relating to his stewardship as Ekiti State Governor between October 16, 2010 and October 15, 2014 as well documented in his handover note, which was duly submitted to the government at the expiration of his tenure on October 15, 2014 as statutorily required.
“The minister will be pleased to respond to specific clarifications the House may wish to make further to your diligent examination of the handover note.”
However, the speaker said Fayemi could still be invited to defend himself over the UBEC fund, despite responding to the first summons of the House via a letter.
Oluwawole said this while answering questions from reporters after an obituary session of the House held in honour of a Third Assembly member of the House, Ajewole Asaolu.
He said, “You will recall that during our last sitting, we invited Fayemi to come and explain how the government he led managed or mismanaged the missing SUBEB counterpart fund.
“We expected him to appear today, but he did not show up. He, instead, responded through a letter, saying that he wouldn’t be able to come owing to certain official duties. He said his stewardship was detailed in the handover note he presented to Governor Ayo Fayose and that the issue of the SUBEB fund was also in it.”
Oluwawole said a copy of the letter had been forwarded to both the House’s Committee on Public Account and Committee on Finance and Appropriation for scrutiny.