Failure to return the property has seriously affected the smooth take off of the administration of Governor Seyi Makinde, His Chief Press Secretary, Mr Taiwo Adisa, has said.
Adisa, in an exclusive interview with SundayPUNCH, said those who have been appointed are making use of their personal cars.
Explaining how former governor Abiola Ajimobi, his deputy, Chief Moses Alake-Adeyemo and other officials emptied government transport pool, Adisa noted that “It is just the norm that after every tour of duty, a worker leaving the services of an organisation drops every property that belongs to the organisation they are exiting.
“It was strange to see that the case was different in Oyo State. The civil service system is so organised that it doesn’t forget. But many politicians don’t know this. So, immediately the last government exited, the system ignited an audit of the state’s property in the hands of operatives of the last administration. The audit team was shocked that only a few items were returned. The team immediately alerted the Office of the Head of Service, who in turn notified the new government of the ugly development.
“Let me also tell you that the system in the state tried to reach a number of the affected persons but it got cold shoulders. There and then, the government of Seyi Makinde authorised the ultimatum for the return of all items wrongly taken away.”
Saying that he cannot really disclose the number of the ‘stolen cars’, Adisa further explained that “the civil servants have the figures. But I can tell you the number is massive. That is why the system was alarmed. But I tell you, something like that has been happening, regime after regime. We got to know that they often tried to recover the items quietly but they never got results. The volume of such impunity this time is, however, audacious.
“The pool is practically empty. The governor, his deputy and all appointees of government have been using their private vehicles. I think the last government just got it wrong. If they intended to go with the vehicles, they could have bought them and paid at approved rates of the government. That is usually done at the federal level. You don’t see senators or members of House of Representatives inherit cars from their predecessors. But why take something that doesn’t belong to you?
“I just told you that all political appointees have to make do with their personal cars. Apart from one car that was purchased for the new governor after the election, His Excellency has been using his own vehicles as convoy cars. The same goes for the deputy governor.”
Confirming that the immediate past administration bought a vehicle for Makinde, Adisa said that @I don’t know what you mean by ‘brand new’. We don’t expect the governor of Oyo State to ride in rickety cars anyway. But then, can one car make the convoy? Which car will ferry the security aides? There is a standard practice that should be maintained. An outgoing government is supposed to provide the full compliment of convoy cars for the incoming administration. The government also maintains a transport pool, managed by the civil servants. When we came on board, the whole place was empty. Let it be noted that stealing government property is not a badge of honour in opposition politics.”