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Local Government Chairmen in a Fight with Governor Abiodun over Alleged Billions of Naira For LGA

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Governor Dapo Abiodun


Local government chairmen across Ogun State are set for a showdown with the governor of the state, Prince Dapo Abiodun, over what they described as a betrayal of trust and non-reward of loyalty by the governor and secretary of the state government, Tokunbo Talabi.

The disquiet, which has now resorted to threats of arrest, jail and kidnapping by some loyalists of the governor against some of the chairmen, may fuel the already tension-soaked state after the governorship election.

Governor Abiodun, whose administration came with the mantra of ensuring the independence of local councils and adequate remuneration of federal allocations to them and ensuring proper discharge of statutory roles, walked back on his promise immediately after the incumbent council chairmen were inaugurated.

Trouble started for the chairmen when they were invited by the governor to open Access Bank accounts for their local councils but were denied the opportunity to be signatories to the bank accounts, according to multiple sources within the governor’s office who pleaded anonymity for fear of being reprimanded.

The accounts which were opened at the Abeokuta branch of the bank were to receive statutory allocations from the federal government. However, rather than have the chairman of the council and director of finance as signatories to the accounts, only their phone numbers were linked to the accounts to receive credit and debit alerts.

A director of finance in one of the councils disclosed that sometimes they receive credit alerts in the morning and, by afternoon, a debit alert withdrawing the amount without any input or authorisation from the council. The director stated that an example of such was when the council received N300 million into the account, and within five minutes, a debit of N295 million was equally received with no knowledge of how it happened and no explanation.

*Ecological Funds*

While the chairmen seem to have gotten used to the system of absolute control by Governor Abiodun, a recent meeting after the governorship election where the governor mandated them to sign for the collection of the federal government-allocated ecological funds without receiving a dime broke the camels back.

“Who does the governor think he is?” a chairman in Ogun central protested in anger while speaking with our correspondent. “We played a significant role in ensuring his reelection. We kept quiet while the public abused us and called us thieves for not doing anything. What do they expect us to do when he has taken all the money? Now he wants us to sign for billions of naira we didn’t collect. At the end of the day, who would EFCC be after? Definitely not him!“

*Money for legal case*

But while the chairmen continue to oppose the move by the governor to corner the ecological fund, a close ally of Mr Abiodun disclosed that the sudden discontent of the chairmen against the governor was selfish and not in the interest of the people.

According to him, the chairmen are aware the governor is done with them and looking to replace them during his second term.

“What do they want from this man? During the election, they were adequately mobilised but kept the money to themselves, the election was a tough battle, and it wouldn’t have been so if they had done what was required.

“Now we are in court. Do they think tribunal cases are free? Where do they expect the governor to get that kind of fund after the election?”

*Thugs taking over functions of local councils*

When asked why local councils could not function with revenues they make from the statutory model, some of the council members disclosed that every rate, levy and ticket that is distributed across the markets and parks, garages and shops, even though bear the local government names, the state government prints them and funds are taking to governor’s office.

The chairmen disclosed that they are at the mercy of transport union members within their vicinity who acts as the governor’s boys and determine when they would meet the governor or discuss matters of the council.

Attempts to speak with the governor were unsuccessful. Multiple calls made to his personal line were unanswered while the state commissioner for information Waheed Odusile’s number didn’t connect.

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APC Suspends Mashood Mustapha over campaign against President Tinubu, other anti-party activities

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Kwara State All Progressives Congress (APC) has suspended former lawmaker and Saraki’s ally, Mashood Mustapha, for alleged anti-party activities in the 2023 general elections.

Mustapha was accused of pitching his tent with the former Vice President and presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, against the candidate of his party, President Bola Tinubu.

Several pictures featuring the former lawmaker, the former Senate President, Bukola Saraki, at Atiku-Okowa campaigns in different states have also emerged on the internet.

But Mashood Mustapha, in December 2023, told his followers that his reason for supporting the former Vice President was personal, adding that he had once helped him and Saraki.

Mr Babatunde Abubakar Tukur, the Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in Alanamu Ward of Ilorin West Local Government, where Hon Mustapha hails from, in a recent statement described him as a divisionist whose plans to hijack the party at the grassroots level failed.

Abubakar added that Mustapha was no longer a chieftain of the APC in Alanamu Ward. He described him as an outcast playing the script of his benefactor from the opposition party.

Parts of the statement read, “It is not out of words to say that MM is a divisionary leader for most of his styles are to always finance dissent group that will cause chaos and confusion whenever political scheming is out of his fingers.

“Do we still need to narrate his act of insincerity towards the party he claimed to be a Chieftain of, he flagrantly abandoned his party and pitched a tent with the main opposition party; his appearance at the Kogi State Presidential rally was not a mistake and in its worst form, he instructed his loyalists to vote against the candidates of our party, and despite that, the party recorded impressive results and that shows that you Hon. Moshood Mustapha is just an empty vessel; then how do you want to dubiously eat from the struggle you failed to partake in.”

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Kwara PDP crisis deepens as Organizing Secretary, Bilikisu Oniyangi resigns

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**…reason linked to embezzlement of 2023 campaign fund*The crisis in the Kwara State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party has continued to linger as the party Organizing Secretary, Bilikisu Oniyangi, resigns.This is coming after the party secretary, Razaq Lawal, resigned a fortnight ago.Bilikisu Oniyangi served as the Commissioner for Education and Human Capital Development under ex-Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed and her sudden resignation is another major blow to the party’s existence in Kwara State.The development followed her letter of resignation addressed to the Chairman of the party, dated 24th November, 2023.The letter reads in part;”Please accept this letter as formal resignation from my position as the State Organizing Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).”I regret to inform you that I am resigning due to personal reasons. While it was a difficult decision to make, it is the best course of action for me at this time”Though reasons for the resignation were not stated in the letter, a source in the party revealed that the reasons may not be unconnected to the refusal of the former Senate, President, Dr. Bukola Saraki to account for the 2023 election’s campaign fund.On the heels of this, the party presidential flagbearer, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has commenced probe of campaign funds embezzlement allegations in Kwara State.

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Imo Election: Ejiogu rounds off campaign, promises to serve the people if elected

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Candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) for the November 11th Governorship election in Imo State, Sir Tony Ejiogu, ended his campaign on Thursday November 9 2023, with a pledge to serve the people of the State with integrity and commitment.

Ejiogu, an accomplished Financial and Business Development Expert said it’s “time to rebuild Imo” and restore its lost glory rampaged by insecurity, poor public infrastructure, unemployment, camotose health sector and the neglect of workers and pensioners’ welfare.

He made these promises while addressing a crowd of supporters at Owerri North, assuring them of the beginning of a new dawn in Imo politics.

In his closing remarks, he said; “I want to sincerely thank our party faithful and Imolites for their labour of love and support since we started this journey. I’ll never take your efforts for granted, I have resolved that in line with our party manifesto, we’ll ensure that our state is rescued and repositioned for greatness.”

While urging his party supporters and Imolites to troop out enmasse to vote for APGA come Saturday, November 11th, Sir Tony Ejiogu urged them to conduct themselves in a peaceful manner, and ensure that their votes count. 

“I speak to your consciences. Let’s all come together and make this project a reality. Vote and protect your vote, stand there, and make sure your vote is counted. t

Their will be no voter intimidation,” he said.

He added, “I have presented myself and taken the bold step, and we are well-positioned to move Imo to the promised land. Yes, there’s hunger in the land, but change your mindset and don’t accept money to vote for people who will still keep you in bondage. Let’s make things right. “

Those present at the event include the state chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), the deputy governorship candidate, Director-General of the Tony Ejiogu Campaign, ward chairmen, women, youth leaders, elder statesmen and host of other stakeholders. 

From August 31 when he unveiled his plan to rebuild Imo, Ejiogu has traversed the nooks and crannies of Imo State, covering over 21 local government areas, including places like Obube Ancient Kingdom, where no politician has ever visited despite the community’s historic significance.

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