{See Letter} Oyo ALGON issues warning to caretaker chairmen, civil servants , banks over LG funds - Mega Icon Magazine
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{See Letter} Oyo ALGON issues warning to caretaker chairmen, civil servants , banks over LG funds

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*OPEN LETTER TO THE PURPORTED LOCAL GOVERNMENT CARETAKER CHAIRMEN, BANKERS TO ALL OYO STATE LOCAL GOVERNMENT COUNCILS AND LCDAs, HLAs/DAGs/DFAs/F&GPCs, ALL LOCAL GOVERNMENT COUNCIL STAFF AND ALL OYO STATE CIVIL SERVANTS*

We are compelled to openly issue this letter of caution to the purported Caretaker Chairmen, Bankers to all Oyo state Local Government Councils, LCDAs, Civil Servants in our dear State and all Local Government Staff across our Council Secretariats, to strongly avoid being put under duress by the Oyo State Government to partake in another man’s sin, by not allowing themselves to be used to further and foist what is clearly an illegal and fraudulent administration over our Local Government Councils and LCDAs in Oyo state.

Over the past few months , we had consistently warned the Oyo State Government, and the Governor of Oyo State to respect the rule of law and desist from the path of illegality he was treading and being railroaded onto by politicians who are hellbent on dividing our Local Government Councils and constituencies as their political fiefdoms and their spoils of war.

1. It is no longer news that Governor Seyi Makinde has demonstrated no iota of respect for the rule of law and our courts, hence his serial breaches leading to an illegal appointment of an unlawful contraption called Caretaker Chairmen. We emphatically restate that there is no law in Oyo State creating a Caretaker Chairman’s office over any Local Government Council and LCDAs, hence the recent purported appointments of Caretakers is a flagrant display of irresponsibility, and mere jokes for public grandstanding with no force of law. It is therefore follows that any operation, directives, approvals, disbursements, decision or step taken by such usurpers occupying a nonexistent office can only be tantamount to an attempt to defraud the revenue of the Local Councils and LCDAs for which such persons and their collaborators shall be prosecuted. We expected the State Attorney General would have attempted to publicly rebut our emphatic position if it were legally rebuttable, but clearly rather than offer legal advice to guide the state, the learned professor seems to have outsourced his role as legal adviser to politicians who speak ignorantly on air about what they know nothing of. The management, administration and financing of Local Councils and LCDAs according to the constitution and the Supreme court in cases variously cited and now in the public domain, can only be validly approved, authorized, authenticated by documents executed by elected Local Government Chairmen. No authorization from any Caretaker Chairman of any Local Government Council or LCDA Caretakers nor their appointors is recognized under the current legal regime in our country. Any civil servant, bank or local government staff that honours such illegal approvals, directives or authorization from such persons therefore renders himself/herself liable to criminal prosecution for conspiracy and fraud.

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2. We recognize that the Governor continues to act illegally hiding behind a cloak of constitutional immunity, while his political collaborators outside government who may be urging you all to embark on serial illegalities, will not be signatories to any official council document that may incriminate you and form the subject of investigations of this orchestrated fraud on the administration of Councils. Let us be clear that the revenue of our Local Government Councils and LCDAs for wages and emoluments are only payable to legally recognized employment positions and staff of Councils. Caretaker Chairmen are not legally recognized under our laws anymore and therefore are not staff of councils, nor are they entitled to collect any wage, emoluments or allowance from our Councils under any guise . It should be strongly noted that under our jurisprudence ignorance of the law has never been an excuse to criminal culpability. A claim of ignorance, or self imposed duress will not avail anyone of our bankers nor Local Government staff and civil servants who act in defiance of established laws to conspire with usurpers not provided for under any law in our land to rob our councils or pass themselves off as chairmen of offices that are both in law, and to your public knowledge not vacant nor conferred by law on any usurping caretaker. Any voucher signed by or authorized by Caretakers will be tantamount to attempted fraud.

3. As you are aware, the office of Chairmen of our Local Government councils and LCDAs are neither vacant nor available under our constitution for any caretaker to justifiably occupy either in law or fact. Therefore any individual who passes himself or herself off as Caretaker Chairman or seeks to issue directives to Local Government/LCDAs staff or civil servants or our bankers will along with such banker or civil servant, be acting fraudulently and in breach of clear legal pronouncements for which such persons and their stooges shall be prosecuted . Make no mistake about it, an armchair pronouncement of a Governor in a constitutional democracy, and a showmanship swearing in , are unknown to our law as currently constituted. It does not, and cannot by any stretch of political spin or imagination legalize what has been pronounced an illegality by the Supreme Court and the High Court of Oyo State.

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4. We remind the Accountant General of Oyo State, the Ministry of Local Government and Council officials across Local Government Councils, that our Joint State/Local government accounts are under the legal regime established by law and the Court judgments, only operatable by the elected local government chairmen whose elections have neither been voided by any court nor by any law. You may wish to refer to the NFIU Guidelines on this. Similarly, we remain approving signatories with the Finance and General Purpose Committees of our Councils over Council funds due to each Council. We equally remain on record with our bankers the confirming signatories for payments out of local government accounts which cannot be changed without recourse to law. It was our valid return as elected Chairmen after contested elections that effectively qualified us in this role. A purportedly dismissive echo of lies by the Governor is empty in law as it is not pursuant to any law, nor in furtherance of any court pronouncement. We can boldly say it under our constitutional democracy that the illegal statements of a Governor does not become law not being legislation nor court order, hence you are not bound by such reckless statements and actions of the Governor that contradicts the law. We are not under military edicts,but under the Constitution sworn to by the Governor himself to defend and protect.
Therefore any document executed, or directed to be executed by the usurping Caretakers shall be illegal and a calculated fraud against the council. Similarly no bank, HLA/DAG/DFA can legally honour the signature of any Caretaker chairman on any confirmations nor disregard our approving signatories as elected chairmen otherwise such civil servant, staff, account officers, bank managers and their collaborators shall be liable for fraud on the revenue of state and criminal breach of trust.

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5. If Governor Makinde continues to toe the path of recalcitrance, let him and his co-travellers continues and face whatever the outcome. Again we reemphasize, *DO NOT PARTAKE IN THEIR CRIMES AGAINST THE STATE* as the law does not excuse criminality by reason of ignorance or even duress, under these circumstances.

It is our appeal to you all to depart from the path of illegality being urged upon you, and be courageous to save yourselves from impending culpability if found wanting. This is an appeal, but make no mistake about it, the law will take its course against every infringement and criminality irrespective of who perpetrates it.

We trust you will ponder over these truths, seek legal counsel from your personal attorneys to be properly guided, and ensure you are not sucked into the crucible Governor Makinde has heated up in our state.

*YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!!*

Prince Ayodeji Abass-Aleshinloye
ALGON Chairman
Oyo State

Pastor Jesutoye Oluyinka
ALGON Secretary
Oyo State

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LG crisis: We will prosecute those who vandalized LGs properties – Oyo govt

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The government of Oyo State declared on Monday that it will bring the full weight of the law to bear on the alleged criminal and violent takeover of some Local Governments and Local Council Development Areas’ secretariats by the dissolved illegal chairmen loyal to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The state government said reports from different parts of Oyo State confirmed on Monday that the sacked chairmen resorted to break-ins and vandalization of government properties, leading some imposters to seize offices of council Chairmen.

The State Government, in a statement by Honourable Babatunde Oduyoye, the Special Adviser on Strategy and Political Matters to Governor Seyi Makinde, maintained that the action of the sacked chairmen amounted to criminality and unwarranted provocation.

It condemned what it called unwarranted lawlessness and motor-park-like brigandage perpetrated by the sacked chairmen on Monday.
According to the State Government, the imposters broke into council offices, vandalising gates, doors, windows and other properties at the respective local council secretariats.
The government, however, appealed to the teeming people of the State to remain calm, law-abiding and patient, pending the decision of the Court of Appeal on the matter slated for 19 February 2020.

It promised that “a drastic measure “will be taken on the reports of destruction and violence which characterised the actions of the sacked chairmen on Monday.

Hon Oduyoye said: “We have received reports of vandalisation of government property. We have received reports of wanton destruction of doors, windows, and others, and I can tell you that the governor will not sit down and watch while some people decide to be lawless. This is criminal and the government will pursue it to a logical conclusion.

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“So, pending the determination of the cases at the Court of Appeal, I think it is only appropriate for these chairmen to be law-abiding because we had said earlier that it is sub judice and we cannot do anything until these cases are determined in the court.

“For the records, the state government, in a statement yesterday, did say that we are going to ensure we do not allow a breakdown of law and order. As we speak, there are two cases in the Court of Appeal and the cases are coming up on February 19th. I do not know why the Attorney-General of the Federation wrote such a letter that is now being used as excuse by some to act recklessly. We will recall that he did a similar thing on the issue of Amotekun.”

The Special Adviser added that as a law-abiding and peace-loving Government, the 68 caretaker chairmen appointed by Governor Makinde were directed to stay away from the secretariats in order to forestall an outbreak of violence, noting, however, that the chairmen have been charged with keeping peace and order in their respective local councils.

He added: “We in Oyo State are law-abiding citizens. The government directed the chairmen to maintain peace. We have just finished a meeting now and workers in the state under the umbrella of NULGE are on strike, and you now begin to ask why the sacked APC council chairmen went to the local government councils.

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“The issue is, there is industrial action by NULGE. I think they are justified by the level of reports we have received of people macheting PDP members they found around the local government councils’ premises, destroying government properties, forcing doors open and all that. NULGE was right to have taken such a decision. We do not begrudge them for doing that but we have told our people to be law-abiding. We have told the chairmen too to ensure there is no breakdown of law and order within the local government areas.”

Speaking on the situation that led to the current imbroglio, Oduyoye maintained that the Court should be allowed to take its decision on who is right or wrong on the matter on ground, insisting, however, that the government, under the leadership of Governor Makinde, would not sit down and watch some desperate elements destroy the state and create fear in the minds of the people.

“Whether one is right or the other is wrong, it is not for me to decide. The court will decide. This is a very simple matter. An election was held when there was an injunction. Second, elections took place in LCDAs not recognised by the Constitution. These are matters before the court.

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“As I said, the court will decide if you can conduct elections in areas not recognized by the constitution and, if you can go ahead to conduct an election when there was a pending injunction, these are matters for the Court of Appeal to decide upon.

Pending that time, we have appealed to the good people of Oyo State to be calm, law-abiding and we will ensure we do something about the report sent to us on those who have destroyed government property,” Oduyoye said.

 

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Oyo ALGON to Makinde: Accept Our Sympathy, Your Excellency

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The Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON), Oyo State chapter has sympathised with the state governor,  Engr. Seyi Makinde, for what it described as the unnecessary stress and avoidable tension the governor and his government have imposed on themselves because of the illegal dissolution of democratically elected local government.

Oyo ALGON further described it as an arbitrary decision which was imposed on the governor  by the few power hustlers who took advantage of his inexperience on governance issues.

The Association in a press statement signed by its Chairman, Prince Ayodeji Abass Aleshinloye in Ibadan on Monday and made available to Mega Icon Magazine said, “Since he didn’t reject the dangerous decision when he wanted to, then he should blame no one but himself for the stress he is going through particularly within the past 72 hours when the reality of our resumption to duty is dawning on the government”.

Reacting to a press  statement issued and signed by the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Makinde, Mr Taiwo Adisa, Prince Aleshinloye said the statement is full of furry and panic signifying nothing beyond “his usual lies, blackmail to confuse the peace loving people of Oyo State”.

Aleshinloye in the statement added, “despite our assurance of peace and adequate police protection to all peace loving citizens in our public statement as we resume our legitimate duty, the CPS to the governor has revealed the government’s plan to foment trouble and return the state to the theatre of political violence and thuggery.

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“When a government that has disobeyed court orders and ignored timely advice by police, whose primary duty is law enforcement and peace keeping, promised to unleash “full wrath of law” on lawful people, then the public should suspect and understand that the government is planning to use thugs not the police or any other security agency to impose its “full wrath of law” as it promised.

“Anyway, the police and other law enforcement agencies have assured ALGON and the general public that trouble makers will not be allowed to perpetuate their violent acts.

“Justice is the first condition of peace, a government that does not respect courts including Supreme Court judgment cannot be trusted to guarantee peace but to unleash violence.

“Once again, we assure all citizens including local government workers of a trouble free resumption, the police as directed by the IGP are fully on ground to enforce law and the Supreme Court judgement. No matter how high anyone is, the Law is above all. Peace be! No cause for Alarm”, the statement concluded

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Oyo LG crisis: We won’t allow breakdown of law and order – Govt.

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The Oyo State Government has declared that it would not allow any group of persons to throw the state into crisis as a result of the ongoing debate on the management of local governments in the state.

The state government on Sunday also insisted in a statement that it was insisting on the full observance of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) in relation to the ongoing controversy surrounding the dissolution of the 68 sacked local council chairmen in the State.

The government further warned some individuals who have been  threatening to derail the peace of the State to desist from such ruinous path or face the full wrath of the law.

The Government, in a statement signed by the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Seyi Makinde, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, informed that the Government’s position became imperative following the threats of violence by the sacked illegal chairmen and the stay-at-home order issued to all local government workers in the State by the National Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE).

The statement added that though Government would not begrudge the NULGE for directing its members to stay away from work in response to persistent threats emanating from the sacked chairmen of local councils and LCDA, it urged all workers in the state to reject any act of brigandage by persons or groups seeking to derail the peace and progressive governance in the State.

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“The attention of the Government of Oyo State has been drawn to a sit-at-home order announced by the State Chapter of the National Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE).

“The Government understands that the sit-at-home order was a response to persistent threats emanating from the sacked chairmen of local councils and Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs).

“Whereas the administration of Governor Seyi Makinde will not begrudge NULGE for seeking to preserve its members from a perceived Armageddon as promised by the sacked council chairmen, the Government would like to put it on record that it will continue to stand by the dictates of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, as amended.

“As earlier stated in a position by the State’s Attorney-General and Commissioner of Justice, Professor Oyelowo Oyewo, issues concerning the tussle over local government administration in Oyo State are before the Court of Appeal and that the two cases are scheduled for hearing on February 19, 2020.

“Any lover of peace, progress and democracy would have no problems waiting to hear from the Court on the day stated.

“We, however, urge all workers in the state to reject any act of brigandage by any persons or groups who are merely seeking to derail the peace and progressive governance that have been the lot of the State since May 29, 2019.

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“We call on the workers and the teeming people of Oyo State to please ignore the threat of violence and brigandage from the sacked chairmen and rest assured that the train of unmatched groundbreaking good governance in Oyo State started by His Excellency, Governor Seyi Makinde, cannot be stopped”, the statement reads.

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