A segment of Lagos residents are, however, of the view that the governor might have tried to clear his name and prove his innocence, but some other segment believes that nothing is new under the sky as Fashola would not be the first governor in the country to ‘swallow people’s money’. Some felt that the opportunity given to Fashola to rule the most commercially vibrant and vivacious state in the country was enough to make his enemies envious. It is also the belief of some people that Fashola is richer than ex-governor and APC national leader, Bola Ahmed Tinubu if their levels of accessibility to finances could be compared.
It could be recalled that weeks back, the incumbent governor, Akinwunmi Ambode fired the accountant-general of the state when he discovered some financial discrepancies and mis-application. The governor was said to have been very furious on noticing that his predecessor, Fashola, signed so many unconcluded projects running into billions of naira and that would hang on his administration’s neck to complete. Like a typical Yoruba man who knows how to escape before being caught within the web, Ambode allegedly began secret probe into the activities of the former Lagos State governor, Fashola thus more financial mess by Fashola and his cohorts would soon be released by the state government and those that are in the know in Alausa, Ikeja.
On the issue of the IT contract brouhaha, the company Info Access Plus Limited denied ever receiving a huge sum of money like N78 million but rather that it collected a ‘paltry’ sum of N12.5 million and that Fashola eventually paid N10 million. Here is one of the media comments on this issue.
“The IT firm named by the Lagos State procurement office as receiving N78 million for the upgrade of former Governor Babatunde Fashola’s personal website, has denied being paid the amount. Info Access Plus Limited said its quotation for the job was N12.5 million, and that the state eventually spent N10 million. The figure contradicts details released by the Lagos State procurement office, first reported by the budget analytic firm, BudgiT. The listing shows N78 million was spent on the website. Curiously, for a company that specialises on building and upgrading websites, a Google search for Info Access Plus, revealed that Info Access Plus Limited has no website of its own. According to information technology experts, www.tundefashola.com, created by the firm for the former governor, is a WordPress website and an upgrade could not have cost more than N300, 000.”
However, the former governor who means different things to different people and who has been seen as an upright, prudent and God-fearing politician whose tenure hardly depicted any form of financial fraud or allegations had gone on to defend himself. He even remained one of the immediate-past governors touted by Nigerians to be appointed as a federal minister in the current Muhammadu Buhari administration and below is part of his comment:
“This statement of profound wisdom informed my silence in the wake of manipulated and unsubstantiated allegations of wrongdoing recently being leveled against me. They started a few weeks to the end of my tenure, and have continued till date. They range from allegations of extramarital paternity of children, to mundane and phantom conspiracy in the National Assembly, a debt profile for Lagos State and lately a website upgrade contract of N78 million, which is being distorted.”
What Global News understands is that there are more angles to this particular story which would surely emanate from the right sources and in our usual tradition of saying it the way it is, we shall be updating our readers on the situation of things as far as the Fashola-gate is concerned. Stay glued to your most trusted magazine, Global News for more details.
It is no more news that former Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Raji Fashola is currently enmeshed in a serious financial fraud allegation as exposed by those who were privy to the day-to-day running of state affairs in the Alausa glass House, office of the then governor. The accusers stormed the media with exclusive information on how the former governor dipped his hand into the revenue of the state and plucked out a whopping N78 million for just upgrading of his personal website. In a quick reaction to the story which was agog on the social, electronic and print media, loyalists and aides of ex-Governor Fashola replied that the IT company alleged to have signed the deal with the governor has denied ever being involved in such business.