The sacked local government chairmen and local council development chairmen under the umbrella of the Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON) on Thursday declared that it is prepared fully to stop any attempt by the state governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde from constituting caretaker committee members in the 33 Local Government council and 35 LCDA in the state.
This was disclosed by ALGON Chairman, Oyo state chapter, Prince Ayodeji Abass-Aleshinloye while addressing a press conference at ALGON House in Ibadan.
The chairman who was flanked by other sacked chairmen and some of their supporters, said they are all out to defend the mandate given by the people of the state without fear or intimidation.
Abass-Aleshinloye stated that despite the fact that the state government has filed an appeal against the high court judgment perpetually restraining it from dissolving the elected council government, Oyo state Governor has again publicly disclosed its plan to constitute ‘very soon’ caretaker committees in all the 33 councils and sole administrators in the 35 local council development areas.
“We consider this as an act of illegality, executive rascality, an affront to the judiciary and rule of law. The governor’s desperate plan to break the peace and return the state to the old days of ‘Pankere’ lawless politics of thuggery where might is right will be resisted by all democratic and peaceful means.
“We warn that any attempt by the governor to impose caretaker committees on the councils when the court case the state government filed is yet to be heard while a perpetual restraining order against dissolution of elected council administration is still subsisting, will be considered as the final push that will exhaust our patience.
“We will be very ready to defend our mandates popularly given by the people who elected us into position of responsibility. You do not sit on a chair that is not vacant except court clears the seat for you or you take the seat by force, a recipe for violence and lawlessness.
“ALGON has resolved at our last meeting that in the event of an invasion of the council secretariats by the Seyi Makinde Forces of Occupation, we will be more than ready to defend the councils and the sanctity of the peoples’ mandate freely given to us.
“All elected local government chairmen and councilors are hereby put on notice and be at alert anytime the governor makes his final push. Where tradition is lacking, a striking example is very necessary. Action and Reaction are equal and opposite.”
The chairman on behalf of his other colleagues then “appeal again to the good people of Oyo State to prevail on Governor Seyi Makinde not to push the state into violence, he should tow the path of honour and respect the rule of law which he swore to uphold.”
Earlier, the chairmen who claimed that they held their general meeting on Thursday passed a vote of confidence on the ALGON Chairman and other executive members to continue to protect their mandate through legal means.
In the communique issued after the meeting, they “reiterated the earlier directive that ALGON executive led by the chairman, Prince Ayodeji Abass-Aleshinloye, should continue to protect our mandate and brief us accordingly as usual.”