For allegedly including non-existing communities in Ekiti State in his constituency projects, the senator representing Ekiti-North Constituency, Duro Faseyi, has been criticised by a group of youths in the area.
Acting under the aegis of Ekiti-North Youth Movement (ENYM), the group, in a protest letter made available to newsmen in Ado-Ekiti, said it was in possession of a document where the senator allegedly perfected plan to defraud Ekiti through bogus projects.
In a statement by Dr. Abiona Ajiboye, its president, on Sunday, the group claimed to have backed the ambition of the senator in 2014 and also saved him from being dropped as candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) after attempts to strip him of the ticket by some people in Abuja.
The group expressed dismay that names of communities, which cannot be found in Ekiti-North Senatorial District and Ekiti State, were included as benefitting communities of the constituency projects listed by Faseyi for 2018 fiscal year.
“The names like Ekiti/Irepodun/Idin/Oke Ero, among others, were conjured and fabricated by the senator to confuse and deliberately divert the attention of the unsuspecting members of the public from the reality of the projects proposed for Ekiti-North Senatorial District in 2018 constituency projects.
“Therefore, it is not only wickedness and barbaric but also appalling for anybody or faceless group to canvass for the re-election of such individual to represent the district after a monumental and almost failed four-year term as a senator.”
But, the Director General of Faseyi’s Campaign Organization, Adeola Ogunrinde, who dismissed the group’s allegations as lies and campaign of calumny, said approval and award of contracts for constituency projects were handled by the executive and ministry and not the legislator.
According to him, “Faseyi, like other lawmakers, manoeuvres his ways to get something that he wants for his senatorial district. It is the executive that awards the project if finally approved.”
Although Ogunrinde was silent on the alleged inclusion of non-existing communities, he however, said that “contract money for constituency projects is not given to any lawmaker. Contractors are paid directly from the ministry. The joy of the legislator is that I have done this for my area. So how can anybody siphon money for project here?
“Roads in the senatorial district belong to federal, state and local governments. Federal Government maintains its roads, state works on its road. Same is applicable to local governments.”
It is not easy for a legislator to work on state or local government roads. Anybody coming with these allegations against Faseyi is a destroyer,” he said.
However, the group insisted that the senator had listed the rehabilitation of selected rural roads in Ekiti/Irepodun/Idin/Oke-Ero Federal constituency of Ekiti State to siphon over two hundred million naira constituency projects money for the area.
“To set the records straight, the Ekiti-North Youth Movement with members cut across various professional bodies and organisations, has always be an advocate of good governance and development for more than 10 years of its existence.
In the build-up to the 2015 general elections, the group was unequivocal through a protest against an attempt to hijack the senatorial ticket of Duro Faseyi by Senator David Mark and Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, who were then Senate President and Nigerian president.
“The group’s stand on equity, justice and fairness would not have been compromised in the game of power tussle to hijack the ticket won by Faseyi during the primary election for another Aspirant”.
The tenure of Senator Duro Faseyi has remained a wasted period in the checkered history of the district. People of the area could not point at any tangible progress or development project completed in the three-and-a-half years of the senator.
“And the most worrisome aspect of the whole scenario is that the Ekiti-North senator has been one of bench-warmers in the Eigth National Assembly. The development, which had also been a major setback for the district and Ekiti State in general.
Ekiti people deserved best, uncompromising, vibrant, visionary and outspoken representatives in the coming 9th National Assembly to get its rightful position in the scheme of things in Nigeria politics. There should not be another error of voting a set of incompetent representatives again during the 2019 polls.
“The mistake of yesterday has resulted to failure of today, which is already a threat to the future and if not checked now, the generation unborn may not forgive us, hence the need for better representatives for Ekiti State,” the group said.
The ENYM, however, called on the youths in the area to set their political affiliations aside by voting the most competent senatorial candidate among the various political parties in the polls.