The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Dr Kayode Fayemi, has threatened to sue the Social-Economic Rights Accountability Project if it fails to prove an allegation that he had been earning pensions from the Ekiti State Government.
SERAP, in a statement on Monday, had included the former governor of Ekiti State among serving public officials who are drawing pensions and other allowances as retirees.
Reacting to SERAP’s claim on Tuesday, Fayemi said he would sue SERAP if it does not make public details or proof of pension and any other remuneration he was alleged to be enjoying from Ekiti government since leaving office as governor of the state in 2014, or publicly apologise to him.
Dr Fayemi, in a statement by his Special Assistant on Media, Mr Yinka Oyebode, said he had not received “a kobo either as pension (as passed by the State House of Assembly) or as severance package (approved by the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission) from the state government since leaving office on October 15, 2014.”
The Minister said while he subscribes to public scrutiny of public officials, such an endeavour should be done with due diligence in order to avoid making wild allegations that are capable of misleading the public.
“Contrary to SERAP’s statement, the fact is that Dr Fayemi does not enjoy any pension from Ekiti State government neither has he received any severance package as approved by RMFAC.
“All SERAP needed to have done in this case was to place a call to the Minister or carry out a thorough investigation at the Ekiti State Ministry of Finance, before going public on such a sensitive matter.
“The leadership of SERAP is urged to do the needful- substantiate the allegation with proof or retract the highly embarrassing statement and offer a public apology to the Minister within seven days or be prepared to defend it in the law court.”, the statement added.