The Ogun State Government yesterday refuted the claims by Bond Investments and Holdings Limited, owned by Chief Bode Mustapha, that the state government owes it $11,740,362.00, as consultancy fees on “external debt and multilateral loans”.
The state government, in a statement by the Commissioner for Finance Mr. Wale Oshinowo, added that it has no legal contract with the firm.
It accused the company of plotting to rip off the state, upon the inauguration of Mustapha’s political ally, Prince Dapo Abiodun, on May 29.
But, the firm dismissed the government’s claims, threatening to invoke the aspect of the agreement on arbitration and adjudication to recover its rightful consultancy fees.
Oshinowo’s statement reads: “The Senator Ibikunle Amosun government warned Ogun indigenes to be on their guard, as regards the finances of the state, as some unconscionable politicians will do everything possible to recoup their investment in the last governorship election from the public till.
“From the facts available, Bond Investments and Holdings Limited, in 2009, entered into an 80-day agreement with the state government, as consultants on Paris Club Refund, which ended in 2010, by effluxion of time and operation of law. Worse, the firm did nothing within the duration of the contract.
“For emphasis, Clause 2.1 of the agreement between Ogun State Government and Bond Investments and Holdings Limited, dated December 23, 2009, stipulated clearly 80 working days and could be terminated at the instance of either of the parties. We note that a letter from the state government titled, Re: Notice of Termination of Contract, Ref. No. DMU/012/122 and dated November 15, 2011, indeed terminated the said contract.
“It is shocking, to say the least, that the company, which accepted the termination of the contract, without a whimper, kept silent until 2017, when the Federal Government began the release of the Paris Club Refund, thus laying bare the opportunistic intention of the promoters of the firm to reap where they did not sow.”
It added: “Paris Club Refund was released to states, under stringent conditions and its use closely monitored by the Federal Government, such that states that deviated, were investigated by EFCC and sanctioned. The Bond Investments and Holdings Limited did not facilitate the refund of any external debt, in respect of Paris Club Debt and any multilateral loan(s) to Ogun State.
“The sudden resurrection of 2009 purported contract was a premeditated action designed to scam the state government, under the guise of an anticipated arbitration judgment. The Amosun government, noted for its probity and accountability in public finance management, will not be a party to this orchestrated scheme to swindle the state.”
He urged the public to discard the claims by the firm and called for public vigilance, as “Ogun does not owe any firm a service debt; it is not in breach of any agreement; and will not need to pay a dime as consultancy fees to any company on Paris Debt Refund.”
But, in a statement yesterday, the firm said the state government appointed it to reconcile and recover all debts, deductions/charges on foreign loan facilities related to the state and the parties executed a consultancy agreement dated December 23, 2009 with respect to Ogun State’s external debt reconciliation.
It insisted that it subsequently performed all of its obligations and communicated with the Debt Management Office (DMO) to recover monies due to the state.