By Henry Odeh
The Special Adviser to governor Seyi Makinde On Community Relations, Hon. Oluwafemi Josiah has blasted the defunct Oyo ALGON for the uproar generated by the move to forcefully take over local government and local council development areas across Oyo State on Monday in what he described as a show of shame.
The former lawmaker of Oyo State house of assembly (2003 – 2007) and a former local government executive chairman of Ibadan North West made this disclosure on Monday while having a press chat with Sunrise Bulletin in his office at the Oyo state secretariat, Ibadan.
He stated that governor Mankind’s dissolution of the defunct ALGON was duly in order because the present administration did not meet duly elected local government chairmen in place upon assumption of office.
He described as unfortunate and regrettable, the unnecessary uproar caused by actions of the defunct ALGON to heat up the polity with the aim of destabilizing the present administration.
Hon Josiah who is one of the foremost leaders in Ibadan North West stated further that part of the reasons for dissolving the defunct ALGON by the present government was that there was a subsisting court injunction that restraint former governor Ajimobi and Oyo State Independent Electoral Commission (OSIEC) from conducting the election.
He alleged that the move by former governor Ajimobi to still went ahead against the court injunction informed the withdrawal of other political parties in the state from participating in the election which eventually made it a no election affair as it was purely an All Progressives Congress (APC) arrangement.
He further alleged that the said election was conducted into 68 local government and LCDAs as against the 33 local government areas recognized by the constitution and the electoral law.
He said that the question that should be asked is what section of the constitution which is the grand norm as well as the electoral law as contained in the constitution empowers OSIEC to conduct elections into LCDAs.
He said “So the question we should ask the outgone ALGON chairmen is what section of the constitution or the electoral law permited OSIEC to have conducted election into LCDAs, the question we should ask them is that what section of the constitution of the federal republic which is the grand norm recognize 68 local government areas in Oyo state that elections were conducted into?”
“Don’t forget that the electoral register that was used for that election was produced by INEC not OSIEC, OSIEC does not have a register so, if OSIEC was going to use INEC register why did OSIEC then went out of INEC electoral law? and don’t forget that once a law is inconsistent with Nigerian constitution which is the grand norm the other law becomes inconsequential.”
“So, I don’t know why they are belabouring themselves heating up the polity.”
“And remember that the same dissolved chairmen went to court asking for perpetual injunction not to be sacked, the same court they went to vacated the injunction so their dissolution is duly in order however, they have a right to go back to court if in their opinion they feel they were unjustly sacked and if the case is in court why are they prejudicial?”
“They may claim that the people of Oyo State voted for them but they must be reminded that the same people of Oyo state voted for governor Seyi Makinde as their governor and the chief security officer of the state.”
“So the issue of the Inspector General of Police writing a letter does not arise because IGP does not have any power to write the purported letter, the duty of the IG is to enforce the law which is the position of the court.”
“Ordinarily, a judgement should be obeyed but in Nigeria do we do that? that is part of our judicial problem in this country because when judgement favors them they obey and keep quiet but when it doesn’t they disobey and start shouting that is why some of us are asking for restructuring.”
It is not the fault of the governor that the Nigerian constitution puts the authority of local government under the state house of assembly.”
“Section 7 of the Nigerian constitution is very clear that the authority of local government is under the state house of assembly.”
“I mean, their governor was in government for seven years without conducting local government elections they never see anything wrong and other people bear the brunt.”
“Let me tell you something today, if there was no court order and elections were conducted into only the 33 local government governor Makinde could not have sacked them but God in His mercies has a way of dealing with people with ulterior motives, they left the lacuna they made the mistake so they should accept their fate, let them go back to court and fight it.”