Few hours after members of the Oyo State House of Assembly passed a vote of no confidence on him, the state commissioner for education, Prof. Adeniyi Olowofela and coordinator of the food vendors, Mrs Toyosi Ajobo has reacted.
Irked by the reply of the commissioner, members of the Assembly had passed a vote of no confidence on the commissioner at plenary today.
This was after the lawmaker representing Irepo/Olorunsogo state constituency, Hon. Oseni AbdulGaniyu Ayesoro had raised a motion that food items supplied from the ministry always got spoilt before reaching the food vendors.
Olowofela’s ministry, insideoyo.com gathered, was also alleged of dividing money of homegrown school feeding programme into two as well as playing the role of aggregators (food suppliers) by supplying the foods and deducting the money directly from the vendors’ accounts.
But, in a swift reaction, Olowofela, in a statement, explained that: “I have the right as a representative of an institution, but then there were allegations that the Ministry of Education was dividing money of homegrown school feeding programme into two. And the ministry has no power over the accounts of the food vendors and the aggregators, since the money is credited into their various accounts directly from the Federal Government.
“The issue is that the house did not allow me to explain myself but concluded that I was rude. Even in the court of law, you must give a fair hearing or when you invite somebody over allegations like this, you allow him to react to the issue.
“And your (House) conclusion was passing vote of no confidence. Well, there are two sides of a coin. That is the way they see it.
“That was the motion moved on the floor of the House, a document which is not true. So, I have the right to protect my name and say the truth. I am saying the truth and I am standing on it.
“When issues like this occur, there is what is called temperament of the moment. Since the beginning of this programme, it has brought about N.7b to Oyo State and we have never asked anybody for one kobo. So, if somebody raises allegations like this in the public domain, it has to be trashed out in the public domain.
“I can give you the details of everything and the food vendors are here, you can ask them questions. But, I want to say I have respect for individuals and the House of Assembly as an institution but I must correct this notion. And I have the responsibility to correct a lie. A lie will not become a truth because it is told in the House of Assembly. We labour day and night to make sure this programme works”, the commissioner submitted.
In her own response, Ajobo described the allegations brought before the House as a set up.
According to her, “once we collect our monies from our various accounts, we take it to Bodija market to buy foods and condiments to prepare meal for the school children. Not even N100 recharge card we buy for the commissioner but rather, he gives us money from his pocket whenever we pay him visit. He is a caring person to all and sundry”, she added.