The Association of Local Government of Nigeria, ALGON in Oyo State has accused Governor Seyi Makinde of being high handed saying that as an administrator, he “has penchant for lawlessness and (his) executive rascality is unequaled.”
The embattled elected local government chairmen and councilors who assumed positions during the tenure of late Senator Abiola Ajimobi spoke in a statement made available to journalists in Ibadan on Wednesday.
The statement titled, Election fraud: Oyo State local government election timetable? Quite laughable!’ questioned the rationale for releasing an election timetable when the case which was instituted by ALGON members was still in court.
The case was instituted by the ALGON members in the state against Governor Makinde and the state government.
The statement, signed by Prince Ayodeji Abass-Aleshinloye, ALGON Chairman in Oyo State, indicated that the Supreme Court has fixed May 7, 2021 for judgement on the protracted case of illegal dissolution of elected local government administration in Oyo State by Governor Makinde.
It read that “As the wise saying goes, a battle is either won or lost. We look forward to a favorable judgment at the Supreme Court since by law and Supreme Court precedent judgments on similar matters, no governor or state House of Assembly has the constitutional power to dissolve elected local government administration in Nigeria.”
It stated that while the parties to the suit are expected to await the judgment for final closure, “It’s surprising to see that the Oyo State Independent Electoral Commission, a party to the suit went ahead to publish a timetable for local government elections which it intends to conduct on May 15, 2021, eight days after the expected Supreme Court judgement on May 7.
“The question that readily comes to mind with this kind of attitude by these people is which kind of vacuous, wasteful minds with total disregard for decency and rule of law are presiding over the affairs of our dear state?
“What if ALGON wins its case and the Supreme Court restores our mandate with specific pronouncement that the elected local government chairmen and councilors return to office and spend the remaining two years of their tenure? What will become of the huge financial resources running into billions of Naira that OYSIEC would have wasted on pre-election jamboree for an election that may not hold by virtue of the judgement?”
The statement, which described OYSIEC’s action as very ridiculous, further read that “It’s a reflection of lawless mindset of political gangsters who have no respect for democracy, democratic process, ethics and peace.
“Three main reasons can be adduced for jumping the gun by releasing election timetable. Governor Makinde may have perfected way to buy off the judgment as being boasted by his political acolytes and street boys. But this may be very difficult for him to achieve because of the integrity of the bench and their precedent judgments. It may be an organised OYSIEC ‘come and contest’ election scam, an election advance fee fraud where many unsuspecting candidates will be encouraged to invest in an election that may never hold.
“The governor may be planning an ‘executive coup’ against the Supreme Court judgement if it does not favour him by going ahead with the election after the judgment even if it doesn’t favour him and his government. The governor and his election merchants may just be grandstanding in a wild flight of fantasy just for psychological relief in order to give a false hope of judicial victory instead of uncertainty of where the pendulum of justice swings.”
The OYSIEC, has however, said that there is no going back on the May 7 election date as actions had been concluded on the timetable with the various political parties expressing interest in participating in the poll.
The Chairman of OYSIEC, Aare Isiaka Olagunju SAN, while addressing journalists at a press conference had said, “We have told the political parties that our allegiance is to the people of Oyo State.
“We made it clear to them that we are going into the process as an unbiased umpire. We do not belong to any party and we are not serving the interest of any party in particular but the interest of the people of the state.”