Ogun council chairmen apologise to Abiodun over alleged diversion of LG funds
• I stand by my petition already before EFCC, ICPC, says Adedayo
• PDP urges Assembly to probe allegation
In a dramatic manner, 18 out of the 20 council chairmen in Ogun State, simultaneously prostrated and begged for forgiveness from Governor Dapo Abiodun over the allegation made by one of them, Wale Adedayo, that the government had been diverting their funds, resulting in zero allocation to the councils.
In a viral video, the chairmen, led by Chairman of Ijebu-Ode Council, who also doubles as Chairman of the Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON) in the state, Emilola Kazal, at the Governor’s Office, Oke-Mosan Abeokuta, also denied the allegation made by Adedayo.
The council chairmen, including Adedayo, tendered an unreserved apology and accepted that mistakes had been made.
In his response, Abiodun said he was disturbed by the baseless allegation against him.
The governor expressed surprise at the allegation, noting that rather than starving the councils,
he had made several interventions on their behalf to lessen their burden.
He said he had, along with two other governors, urged President Bola Tinubu to help with a separate intervention fund for local councils.
Meanwhile, Adedayo, in a telephone conversation with The Guardian, insisted that he stands by his allegation, which he said, had already been sent to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission
(EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt and Other Practices Commission (ICPC).
He also challenged his fellow chairmen, who prostrated, to explain to Nigerians and their councils what they have been doing with the allocations that they claimed to have collected so far.
“If there is nothing sinister, why should elected officers prostrate to an elected officer? This is a democracy and not a kingdom,” he said.
However, the state chapter of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) said Adedayo’s allegation of fund diversion against Abiodun had finally vindicated the claim that the APC-led administration has continued to cripple activities of the councils.
Chairman of the party in the state, Sikirulai Ogundele, therefore, urged the House of Assembly to probe Adedayo’s allegation against the governor.
Get the latest news delivered straight to your inbox every day of the week. Stay informed with the Guardian’s leading coverage of Nigerian and world news, business, technology and sports.