A Representative of Coscharis Motors, Justin Ngele, yesterday told the Judicial Panel of Inquiry probing the administration of former Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State that his organisation supplied 156 vehicles worth N1,284,159,000 based on oral agreement.
Led by the counsel to the automobile firm, Peter Jiya, he said the company executed the deal on trust.He added that the state government later issued a letter of award for purchase of additional 59 units of vehicles which were equally supplied.
Ngele said of the 235 vehicles supplied between 2013 and 2014, N1.449 billion was paid, leaving behind a balance of N459 million.But a witness from the Ministry of Local Government, Samuel Akinjide in his statement on oath, alleged that the ministry received an invoice of N1,284,159,000 for the financing of 156 Ford Range Rover Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs) for traditional rulers in the state.
He also claimed that the then Commissioner for Finance, Vincent Kolawole, had taken delivery of the vehicles before the official communication. Akinjide averred that “Coscharis Motors on May 2, 2014 requested for payment in respect of 235 vehicles instead of the 156 units the ministry was directed to purchase.
“By this letter, there is no evidence that Coscharis Motors paid taxes on the vehicles. The automobiles were distributed without the input of the ministry.”
He continued: “The local councils were to settle the debt on equal basis even though they did not solicit for it.“The General Administration Department (GAD) and the Ministry of Finance have been contacted but they all claimed ignorance of the purchase.”Consequently, the panel adjourned sitting till September 8 to enable the automobile company tender original documents to back its claim.