By Dayo Johnson

AKURE—THE Ondo State government and the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, yesterday, traded words over the state government’s proposed plan to pull down all political billboards, banners illegally mounted or pasted by corporate bodies, political parties and religious groups in the state without permit.

While the Ondo State Signage and Advertisement Agency, OSSAA declared that “reclaiming the virtues of billboard industry in Ondo State is beyond political party lines, the PDP described the action as an abuse of power.

In a statement by OSSAA chairman, Mr. Akinwande Akinrodoye said the agency was “out to ensure the aesthetics and beauty of Ondo State is maintained and improved.”

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He said the law establishing the agency which came into existence in 2011 “prescribes that corporate bodies, political parties, individuals and religious organisations having outdoor structures to register and obtain permit from the agency before erecting, constructing, enlarging or structurally modifying any out of home structure.”

The statement reads: “Accordingly, the agency has resolved to bare its fangs on all structures including billboards, banners and pasting of posters illegally mounted or pasted by corporate bodies, political parties and religious groups in the state. In fact, all such structures are now to pay annual exposure fee.

“We urged all affected persons, groups, political parties; corporate entities and religious organisation in the state to remove all such structures that contravene this law.

“It has come to the attention of the state government that across the state there are many outdoor advertisement and signs without compliance with the extant law on same, which is, OSSAA law.

“The law empowers the agency to enter into any property or premises for the purposes of carrying out inspection necessary for the proper administration of the law.”

It’s an abuse of office—PDP

Faulting the state government’s decision, the opposition PDP in Ondo State described the plan to pull down billboards without permits as intolerance of competition and absolute abuse of office.

Zonal Publicity Secretary of the party in the South West, Mr. Ayo Fadaka in Akure said: “We note the hostile attitude of APC governors in the South West to the fact that candidates of our Party are erecting billboards and banners advertising their candidacy.

Fadaka said: “It is in absolute bad taste that they have resorted to destroying or threatening to destroy these materials, it typifies their intolerance of competition and absolute abuse of office.”

 

 

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