By Henry Ojelu
About 20 suspended Local Government Chairmen and heads of 37 Local Council Development Area in Ogun state have threatened to commence legal action against the State Government and House of Assembly over their alleged suspension.
The Ogun State House of Assembly had on May 3, issued a resolution suspending all political functionaries at the LGs and LCDAs. Acting on the resolution, the state government froze all LG and LCDA accounts in the state.
But addressing a press conference in Lagos, the local government chairmen insisted that their suspension was illegal, unconstitutional and void having been duly elected by the people Ogun state for a four-year term which expires on October.
Counsel to the chairmen, Monday Ubani stated that having unsuscessfully explored several avenues to make Ogun sate goverment and House Assembly to reverse their suspension, the only option left for them is to approach the court.
Ubani also raised an alarm that since the suspension of the LG chairmen, the state government and its cronies have been meddling with the bank accounts of the various local government in the state.
Calling on the NFIU to investigate the matter, Ubani said that since assuming office nearly four years ago, majority of the LG chairmen had not been paid for over 33 months and have only received N500,000 as security vote from the state government .
He said: “The decision to freeze the LG/LCDA bank account and their suspension before the expiration of their tenure, based on purported petitions which they were not given opportunity to respond to is a gross violation of their constitutionally guaranteed fundamental right to fair hearing, and hence cannot stand.
“Even if fair hearing was given to them before the decision to suspend them was reached, no law gives power to either to the State Governor or State House of Assembly to suspend, terminate or abridge the tenure of duly elected council executives, having been duly elected by their constituents and certificated by Ogun State Independent Electoral Commission.