Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State has vowed to deal severely with people who are bent on sabotaging the good work of the State through corruption.
Makinde made this known at his Ogodi Secretariat after receiving members of the Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT), who paid him a courtesy visit.
He added that the board of operations of the State Economic and Financial Crimes Commission will soon be inaugurated to clamp down on corrupt government officials in the State. Makinde said this was important because since assuming office, more than 80% of the corruption cases brought to him are from the educational sector.
Makinde’s administration had instituted a novel education program that seeks to alleviate the burden of parents training their wards in school.
However, it would seem some persons have decided to take advantage of this gesture by extorting parents. He pointed to instances of some local inspectors of education asking for gratification from principals before handing over the books purchased by government for free distribution to students as well as incomplete information about how the N526 million first term grant was distributed.
Makinde said, “Right now, I have had reports that in some schools, they are collecting money for mock exams. When they bring me a file asking for permission to spend money to print examination materials, I approve it.
“We want to lighten the burden on our parents and majority of our people. In certain schools, they are being blackmailed into doing certain things. Enlighten your members that I will not back off.
“I have taken it upon myself to monitor the education sector because we have committed a lot of money into it and we want to get value for money. However, the feedback that I am getting has not been encouraging.
“I carried out a sting operation. First, I have had to let a woman go because she was collecting money from teachers to get promoted or to be posted to choice areas. Second, there is the case of four people collecting money at TESCOM and were caught. They are going to be dismissed and they will be prosecuted. It is a decision that is painful but we have to ensure that we get value for whatever we are committing.
“They brought the file to me asking to approve the grant for this term and I asked them to give me a breakdown of how the grant for the first term, over N500 million, was distributed. It’s about accountability.
“After about five weeks, they brought back incomplete information. However, I asked that we go ahead and give the second term grant while we are looking into the returns for the first term.”