By Desmond Ogudu
Seyi Makinde, Governor of Oyo state, has dissolved the Oyo State Independent Electoral Commission (OYSIEC).
A statement issued on Friday in Ibadan by the State’s Head of Service, Mrs Amidat Agboola, said Governor Makinde ordered the dissolution with effect from July 1.
The decision is conveyed in a letter signed by the State’s Head of Service, Mrs. Amidat Agboola . Agboola said the Governor is aware that the tenure of the members has not expired but the Government is ready to offset all the salaries and entitlements of the members for the remaining period of their tenure.
“While noting the fact that your tenure has not expired, the State Government is prepared to offset the salaries and allowances payable to you till the expiration of your tenure. His Excellency wishes you the best in your future endeavours” she said.
The board members were directed to hand over all property of the State Government in their custody to the most senior director in the Commission.
The Association of Local Government of Nigeria,( ALGON) Oyo State has condemned the dissolution of the Oyo State Independent Electoral Commission (OYSIEC) by the State Government. ALGON in a statement signed by its Chairman, Prince Abass Aleshinloye, said the dissolution was illegal, unconstitutional and arbitrary as the Commission has a statutory five-year tenure which ends in 2021.
He described the Governor’s statement that all the entitlements due to the members of the dissolved Commission would be paid in order to absolve the State of any liability as, “laughable and humiliating of the Commission’s members”, he pointed out.
The ALGON Chairman advised the Governor against the planned monetization as, “illegalities cannot be monetized and commercialized”, adding that monetization of lawlessness does not cure its illegality. He described the action as corruption in its basest form, “morally reprehensible, unconstitutional and cannot stand the test of law”. Aleshinloye called on ALGON members, Secretaries, Councillors and Supervisors to ignore the directive to a committee set up earlier to probe the accounts of elected Local Government administration by the Governor. He described the committee as another illegality that is unknown to the Nigerian constitution and an affront on subsisting court judgement. “By law, a Governor cannot probe Local Government Chairmen, just like the President cannot probe a State Governor by an adhoc committee. It is only a Governor of illegalities that seeks to dare the hallowed letters of our constitution which he swore to uphold. No State Governor in Nigeria has followed this ill-conceived lawless example. Accounts of Local Government Councils are regularly audited by the auditors from the Auditor General’s office and its activities are also regularly monitored accordingly. We therefore join the good people of Oyo State to demand a reversal of such poor and reckless executive decision”, he concluded.