Ekiti State Governor, Peter Ayodele Fayose, on Thursday described the nationwide anti-corruption protests of the organised labour as a mere jamboree.
The governor, who said “no political office holders can steal without the cooperation of the civil servants,” urged the labour unions, predominantly civil servants, to purge themselves of corruption.
He spoke while receiving the labour leaders, led by the Chairmen of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Raymond Ade-Adesanmi and Trade Union Congress, Ayodeji Ladeji, in his office in Ado Ekiti.
Fayose said, “No governor, minister or top political office holders can steal a penny from the treasury without the cooperation of the civil servants. We don’t write papers as politicians, but we only approve whatever the civil servants came up with.
“I consider the anti-corruption war of President Muhammadu Buhari as mere propaganda. If you want to fight corruption, you have to do it by example. President Buhari must start from his party men. He should probe how his campaign was funded because he told Nigerians that he is a poor man.
“Whatever I say about Buhari should not be mistaken for hatred, I don’t hate him. But, he has to desist from fighting corruption with political face. I differed seriously to his anti-corruption war because he has been protecting other former heads of state, except President Goodluck Jonathan, who contested against him.
“What is happening to Halliburton’s scandal and other corruption cases perpetrated before Jonathan’s government? This is what I expected the labour to do. They should ask questions, rather than mere protests.”
Fayose also criticised the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, which he accused of also displaying signs of corruption.
“The commission has been evading the payment of N10 million it ought to pay me over appeal court judgement when I sued EFCC for harassing my wife. Is this not corruption.
“I stand to be corrected, I am the only governor who calls the labour leaders to Joint Allocation Account Committee and Federation Allocation Account Committee to decide how the state allocation should be spent. This is to tell you that I have nothing to hide and nothing to fear.”
Ade-Adesanmi said the protest was designed to sensitise the public about the danger of corruption to the society.
“All funds identified to have been stolen should be recovered and kept in special accounts to create jobs.
“Corruption has affected all the sectors; education, civil service, banks, markets, transport, power, manufacturing and other private and public institutions. It has lead to the closure of factories and engendered poverty in the system.
“It breeds all kinds of crimes like robbery, vandalism, kidnapping, youth restiveness and insecurity. We promise that the trade unions will continue to support the current leadership in its fight against corruption,” he said.