Immediate past Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, has slammed Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State, over comments that the Agricultural Programme of the last administration was a scam.
Adesina insisted that the ATA was a real success story and not a sham as claimed by the governor, adding, that it was most uncharitable for the governor who was in a better position to know the success of the ATA to attempt to discredit it for reasons best known to him.
The former minister in a statement by his Special Assistant on Media, Dr. Olukayode Oyeleye, said “Foremost, it is a bad public relations stunt, not expected from the governor. Secondly, his comments detract from the ATA – a reform that was vigorously pursued and implemented by Dr Akin Adesina, now president elect of African Development Bank.
“As the chief executive of a state so blessed with natural resources so highly favourable to productive agriculture, Governor Oshiomhole ought to think rather on how to make Edo more enterprising. In doing so, an area he is expected to be more interested in, should be agriculture, the statement read.
Meanwhile, Oshiomhole said on Tuesday that the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) generated N162 billion in a year, but remitted N2bn to the federation account, keeping N160 billion for itself.
Oshiomhole, stated this in Abuja at the National Delegates’ Conference of the National Union of Roads Transport Workers.
He said that the figures he quoted were from an official report, and called on the labour movement to support President Muhammadu Buhari’s anti-graft war.
He also advised the members of the National Peace Committee to give the expected attention to the place of justice in the quest for lasting peace.
While noting that any peace that was not backed by justice would not last, he said, “So, I want to propose to the President of the NLC that you should advise the members of the National Peace Committee to include justice, national justice at the peace committee because peace is a product of justice.
“So, for us to have peace, there must be justice otherwise we are going to have the peace of the graveyard and there can be no justice if one person can pocket $6bn.
“Last week, someone told us and this was an official report that in one federal parastatal, the NPA, they admitted to collecting N162bn in one year. They spent N160bn out of that and remitted N2bn to the Federal Government. Is that justice? Can someone plead in defence of this kind of abuse?”
The President of the NLC, Mr. Ayuba Wabba, who also spoke at the event, promised to support the President’s crusade against corruption.
Wabba said, “We are therefore saddened by the news making the rounds that the peace committee recently visited President Buhari to persuade him against bringing to book those involved in the scandalous theft, which we now understand runs into several trillions of naira.
“We call on the eminent members of this committee not to diminish their standing in the eyes of the Nigerian public by trying to stand in the way or better still, act as an obstacle to the retrieval of our commonwealth by these erstwhile public officers, who have plainly betrayed the trust of the Nigerian people.”
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