Governor Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State has said his predecessor, Former Governor Ibikunle Amosun did not capture the debt profile he left behind properly.
SURGENIG NEWS NIGERIA reports that a report by the Debt Management Office indicated that the domestic debt profile of Ogun rose from N95 billion in June 2019 to over N153 billion in December 2020.
But, Abiodun said he did not incur the debt, saying the figures given to it by the immediate past administration did not capture the entire liabilities it left behind.
In a statement by the governor’s Chief Press Secretary, Kunle Somorin, Abiodun said about N50 billion in financial liabilities were not accounted for in the financial report handed over to him in May 2019.
According to Abiodun, the omitted amount was financial liabilities incurred by Amosun’s administration due to unpaid pensions, gratuities and outstanding staff salaries “which surprisingly were not captured in the books left behind for the new government.”
“We only got to know about this amount in the course of our carrying out due diligence on Ogun State finances shortly after we took over. And as a transparent government, committed to being accountable, we had to disclose this for the first time, to give a true picture of the State’s indebtedness,” the statement said.
While noting the recent report by the DMO, on the state’s domestic debt, the statement said the omitted figures by the Amosun administration had an impact on the DMO report.
“The increase in the 2020 total debt of the state was due to an undisclosed gratuity and staff liabilities of about N50bn not recognized in the State financial statements in May 2019 at the end of the previous administration.
“In order to show the complete picture of all State liabilities, the current administration booked the gratuities and staff liabilities in the financial statements of the state hence the increase,” the statement explained.
However, Abiodun did not reveal how much his government has borrowed since the assumption of office.