■ He retired, not resigned – Govt says of Kolawole

Clement Adeyi, Osogbo

Osun State Accountant General Mr Alaba Akintayo Kolawole has resigned his appointment following controversies surrounding the alleged diversion of N16.67 billion Paris Club refund secretly released to the state by the Federal Government.

The development is coming to the open barely hours after our sister publication, Saturday Sun, broke the news on the secret release of the huge sum as the last tranche of the Paris Club refund to the state.

Some state governors across party lines who reacted on Friday to the payment to only Osun State argued that the secret manner the money was released to the state government indicated that it was to help the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) successfully execute the state governorship election scheduled for September 22.

The service of the Accountant General who was said to have been due for retirement since July 31, 2018 was, however, extended till the end of the tenure of Governor Rauf Aregbesola.

Things, however, took a different turn last week over alleged instructions issued to Kolawole on election campaign funds, which he found odd and unable to carry out.

To shield himself from any trouble, Kolawole was said to have offered to disengage from service immediately on Friday after which he wrote the banks where the state’s accounts are domiciled to inform them that he will no longer be a signatory to the state accounts effective from Monday, September 10, 2018. Reacting to the development, the Osun State government yesterday declared that the Accountant General, Mr Kolawole, did not resign his appointment as being insinuated, but retired on account of reaching the age of 60 years few days back, in line with the civil service rules and practice.

The government described the rumour as untrue and should be disregarded. The state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Adelani Baderinwa, who disclosed this yesterday in a statement in Osogbo, the state capital, said that Kolawole had served the state meritoriously in various capacities since he joined the service some decades ago.

He added that he was appointed as Accountant General by Governor Aregbesola in 2012 when he (Kolawole) reached the pinnacle of his career.

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Baderinwa said that Kolawole was known to be diligent and hardworking in his duties while in office, adding that the service would miss him and his contributions.