OSUN DEFENDER Promotes Two, Appoints One

IN order to reward steadfastness, efficiency, hardwork and commitment to work, the management of the people oriented OSUN DEFENDER newspaper has moved up two of its staff with the appointment of a new one.

In the new arrangement, Mr. Kola Olabisi, who was the pioneer Editor of the newspaper is now its Managing Editor, while Mr. Kayode Agbaje, former senior reporter in the establishment is now the Editor with Mr. Kola Odepeju’s appointment as Lagos Editor. The promotions and appointment are with immediate effect.

According to a statement from the newspaper’s management in Osogbo on Tuesday, the management of the newspaper was not unmindful of the unalloyed commitment and maximum exhibition of professional wherewithal to ensure the establishment and sustainability of the newspaper which Olabisi demonstrated during the period of his editorship from foundation to date.

“One good turn deserved another. The management of OSUN DEFENDER Newspaper is not unmindful of your unflinching commitment laced with demonstration of professional expertise to ensure the foundation and continuous existence of the newspaper which today in Osun and beyond, is the darling of progressive-minded people.

“It’s simply irresistibly necessary to reward you with the hope that you will continue to provide your leadership role for the establishment which you staked everything you have, including life, to ensure its existence,” the management told the immediate past editor.

The management also enjoined the new Editor and the Lagos Editor to work in tandem in the overall interest of the newspaper.

Olabisi who cut his journalism teeth at the defunct Concord Press of Nigeria in 1988 as a sub-Editor and Daily Times of Nigeria PLC was at various times a proof reader, reporter, features writer, senior sub Editor, production Editor and State Editor.

The pioneer Managing Editor of OSUN DEFENDER who is a product of Thomson Foundation of Great Britain, possesses a Higher National Diploma (HND) in Book Publishing from Yaba College of Technology, Lagos, Diploma in Journalism from Nigerian Institute of Journalism (NIJ), Ogba, Lagos and Advanced Diploma In Journalism from Times Journalism Institute, Lagos.

Olabisi attended Saint John’s Grammar School, Oke-Atan, Ile-Ife, Osun State.

Agbaje, the new Editor attended The Polytechnic, Ibadan, Oyo State and Ogun State Polytechnic, now Moshood Abiola Polytechnic Abeokuta where he bagged National Diploma and a Higher National Diploma (HND) in Mass Communications respectively also a product of Gbongan/Odeomu Anglican Grammar School, Gbongan Osun State.
He had worked with various newspapers.

Odepeju newly appointed as Lagos Editor of Osun Defender holds a Bachelor in Arts degree in linguistics from Ondo State University Ado-Ekiti now University of Ado-Ekiti (UNAD) in 1994 and, currently on a master is degree programme in international Relations at Lagos State University.

He has had several articles and write-ups published in several prominent Nigerian and foreign newspapers and magazines. The Lagos Editor is also an Author and a poet with two books and numerous poems to his credit.

By KAZEEM MOHAMMED

Okiro Shuns Secret Talks With Oyinlola

EFFORTS by the embattled Osun State Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola to hold a secret talk with the top echelon of Nigeria Police Force (NPF) met a brickwall during the week, as the Inspector – General of Police (IGP), Mr Mike Okiro turned down the governor’s request politely.

According to an investigation conducted by OSUN DEFENDER during a retreat for top police officers hosted by Osun State Government, held at Miccom Golf Resort, Ada, Boripe Local Government Council Area of the State, the governor reportedly sent one of his men to the IG, with the aim of informing him on the need to hold a clandestine meeting with the governor on certain raging issues in the state.

Findings further revealed that the super cop reportedly informed the governor’s men that he would see to it before the end of the retreat, premising his delay on the need to confer with his (Okiro) men on some pertinent security issues.

It was gathered from a tipster that Okiro called on a stop ranking police officer, who had earlier-on manned the zone 11 to brief him about the plausible matters that could be put to him by the governor.

OSUN DEFENDER was hinted that the senior cop reportedly informed the number one policeman to do everything possible to avoid the clandestine talks with the governor, arguing that the opposition in the state has its ears on the ground. It was learnt that the super cop reportedly received a telephone call from the governor when the discussion was on, but his (Okiro) response was sharp and complimentary.

When he ended the phone call, according to the source, the super cop further asked his man to brief him the more on the development in the state, he (Okiro) was mouth-agaped to hear about the painstaking efforts of opposition and eagle-eyed journalists in pinning down the nocturnal conversations between the judges of the election petitions tribunal and a lawyer to the governor.

Pleading with IG to shelve the secret meeting, the senior police officer further reiterated that the police institution may be dragged into the murky water of politics in the state, should Okiro allow the meeting to take place.

Information has it that the super cop then tasked the State Commissioner of Police (CP) John Moronike to speak with the governor on his behalf, saying that he would be too engaged at the retreat.

A source close to the Oke-Fia Government House said that the governor reportedly waved the matter aside when the CP spoke with him, saying that he only wanted to have a courtesy company with the super cop.
When the CP reportedly fed the IG back on the development, information further has it that Okiro expressed his reservation and soliloquizing something suggestive of ‘Thank God, I would have walked myself into a web’.

Findings exclusively revealed that the governor chose to host the police retreat in order to curry favour from the police authority with aim of nailing the opposition that is stifling his government with petitions to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

It would be recalled that opposition political parties and the 11 members of the Action Congress (AC) in the House of Assembly have petitioned the EFCC about some alleged fraudulent practices of the state government, as touching the deduction of local government funds and the illegal lodgment.

A political pundit, who spoke on the matter said that the embattled state helmsman has a lot to cover, saying that he (governor) is still looking for a way to subdue the rampaging opposition of the state.
“Remember, the governor could not substantiate his concorted bomb blast drama and the whole thing faded away; he came up with other drama series, his antic were discovered. So, he would want to explore any means possible, the secret talks with IG inclusive,” said the pundit.

Meanwhile, the Inspector – General has said that the police authority would do everything to eliminate check-point corruptions, saying that it was insulting that men of Nigeria police are still collecting N20 from motorists.

“We will check corruption in the police force and eliminate N20 collection at check points. It is an insult that our men are still harassing motorists over N20,” said Okiro.

In another development, the impact of the retreat was felt in town, as Osogbo, the State Capital was filled with men of Nigeria Police, traffic section, controlling vehicular movements.

Oyinlola’s Latest Fraudulent Transaction

IF Osun State still had anything resembling a state legislature, by now articles of impeachment would have been submitted. Just as one is tempted to think it cant get worse for the long suffering people of Osun State, another of all scams pops up!

Even in the theatre of the absurd, which Osun State has become, it is difficult to work out any connection between Olagunsoye Oyinlola, pretender ‘governor’ of Osun State and matters relating to culture.

However, in the constant search for misfortune, the halpless governor has put his inglorious foot in again. Nigeria’s greatly cherished Nobel Laureat the inestimable patriot Prof Wole Soyinka has threatened to sue former President Olusegun Obasanjo over his presidential library’s alleged appropriation of the personal archives of German arts scholar Ulli Biere and wife Georgina as part of its collections.

As Professor Soyinka has pointed out, impostor ‘governor’ Olagunsoye Oyinlola, giving scant regards to the interest of Osun State as usual, has with reckless abandon appropriated intellectual property which belongs to the people of Osun State to the Obasanjo library. This is of course in line with the irresponsible and cow-a-liar-attitude to public property associated with the Okuku-born prince and the court of jesters over whom he presides.

It will be recalled that in the recent past, Oyinlola’s wife suddenly became the ‘owner’ of her pet projects property financed with a N50 million donation from the state in addition to sundry donations from the state’s local governments and a myraid of the beneficiaries of inflated Osun State government contracts. Inspite of justified public outcry, they think they have gotten away with this heinous crime, so the serial looters have moved on to another looting project.

Thank God, the eagle-eyed, Prof Soyinka is adamant that they wont get away with the latest scam. Qnite rightly too! In the words of the Nobel Laureate: “If there is justice left in this country, some should be in the dock, it is the property of Osun State, Oyinlola has no right to donate. “Oyinlola will have cause sooner rather than later to explain his role in this unsavoury business. The funds of the people of Osun State were used to obtain the papers and articfact. The proper abode for them is in Osogbo the Osun State Capital. Oyinlola does not have the moral, political or legal right to transfer them to Obasanjo’s personal library. This is a fraudulent transaction and it must be reversed immediately!

To butters the point, Prof Soyinka has pointed out that the paper before the UNESCO on the transfer of the archives had been manipulated to reflect the Obasanjo Library as the institute to house them. This is a grotesque misrepresentation of the truth. This is because the original Memorandum of Understanding between Ulli Biere, his wife and the Federal Tourism Ministry never mentioned transferring the archives to Obasanjo. This being the case, what we are witnessing is a fraud, for as Prof Soyinka has pointed out the MOU between Bierre and the government is that the archives would be housed at a new centre in Osogbo called the Ulli Bierre Foundation, which should be managed by a board made up of representatives from Osun State government, the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife and the University of Ibadan.

Prof Soyinka has confirmed that Ulli Biere has confirmed that there was no time he gave his ascent to a transfer to the Obasanjo Library project. The people of Osun State must rise up and use every constitutional means to checkmate this fraudulent attempt to transfer a key state asset.

For one, tourism funds will be lost forever if the artifacts are transferred out of Osun State. Surely Osun State needs every source of internally generated revenue. If Olagunsoye Oyinlola wants to express his gratitude to Obasanjo for foisting him on the hapless people of Osun State, there is a lot of ways he can do this. He can transfer his family’s personal assets artifacts. He will however not be allowed to play Father Christmas with Osun State assets. Enough of this nonsense!

Osun State Cock And Bull Legacy

MY heart bleeds, and my bravery is taken away from me. As I consider the toiling of the nationalists who sacrificed all there were to let go, including their lives and essence. As the legacies of their doggedness are allowed to decay as if our past has been annilulated, and the antimacassar of our historic chairs are being removed so that the set will not only be dirtied by the liquid of perspiration but also to be defaced into shreds for no senses to benefit from.

I begin to wonder if this is truly our nature as ordained by God, or if it is a concoction that the ingenuity of man which is strange to God has brought about. Why do we suddenly have accursed land? Why the patience to put on a toga of wasted generation? Why do we appear, now to have come from a neutral planet? Why should we wait until what we are destined to prey upon suddenly become the predator to consume us? Where is the future? Where is the posterity?

I never contemplate being a politician. I have seen men get rich quickly and like the dew in a sunny day, the wealth disappeared unnoticed. I have seen people (male and female alike) dubbed as of timber and calibre and sooner than envisaged they turned paper –serviette ment for men to squeeze after fulfilling the mop up duty, though they are mollified with such soothing statement as “God will do it again”, only to be mocked behind them because the panoply of fine linen that decorates their skeletons, is abrupthy removed.

This is life for you and I think it is not an experience to relish though such is incubated on our style of charade called politics in this part of the world, albeit in the state of the living spring. No wonder, all attempts to give it human face by new entrants at the arena are being rebuffed, and discouraged through all methods and styles. Your guess is as good as mine.

It was a day in July 2008; a day that shook me off my sterling equilibrium, a day that my sternness utterly betrayed me. It was indeed a day not to savour. On that day, the following dialogue ensued:

Host:- Good morning my friend
Self:- Good morning.

Host:- It is quite an age.
Self: Actually, it is because you people in the political circle have decided to abandon us in our state of economic uncertainly; after all you (politicians) are in control of economic power.

Host:- You can also join us if you are interested in the cake-sharing process.
Self: I will join you when the terror is clearer.

THIS conversation took place in the atmosphere of jokes and jesting but my host suddenly became more frank and painstaking when he interjected thus: “I know you from your youth days as a gentle and easy=going guy and I am sure there is no correlation between your nature and what obtains in the political arena”.

He intended to end the conversation by honestly asking a question: “Can you carry gun and cutlass? Even if you can, can you kill? I was gazing at him in bewilderment when hurriedly he asked me for permission to attend to a political associate.

I got more confused the more I tried to unsettle the riddle and I was in this state when a statement filtered into my ears that lives had been wasted in Okuku, the home town of the Chief Security Officer of Osun State earlier in April. This quickly unsettled the riddle as the case was like the replica of an hunter who came into the town of the primitives and trampled under his feet ten chickens. He told those who shuddered at this act to be calm, as he was only demonstrating was used to happen in the bush.

It became clearer the message my politician friend was trying to pass across: The emblem of politics is violence. It is chaos. It is desperation and it is crudity. That explains why we have to revisit what were considered archaic before we resorted to the so-called modern day politics. If what is modern becomes dangerous, if it is dehumanizing, if it is heart-aching, we then must hold on to the archaic since it was not retrogressive and heart rendering as we have it today.

Before what our politicians call modern day politics consumes us, we must be a little proactive. We must repudiate “khakitocratic” politics that is already sending an obliterating signal. Or how else can we explain a situation whereby the home base of the state’s Chief Security Officer is being ravaged by violence. I can recall that many lives were lost in Igbaye in March this year during PDP intra-party fracas.

I bared my soul on this great issue and a friend asked me to throw in the towel as he has done. According to him, Nigeria is not worth dying for because those who were at the fore front of freedom struggle in the past are now forgotten heroes with their dependants paying dearly for it; as they are often abandoned by the direct beneficiaries of the struggle. I however believe to the contrary.

I see the government of the day igniting a flame that will be difficult to manage. Flame of violence consumes faster than a molten magma in that while the fragments of its rubbles can still be worked upon to serve useful purposes for the survival of mankind, the flame of violence can wipe out a whole race from the surface of the earth.

THE agents of socialization can only do one of two things: To orientate for the purpose of being reformed so that personal efforts and contributions will impact on the society for the advancement of its course. Every mortal therein will fashion our meaningful ways of living and this is not in jeopardy of other people’s quests for survival. The environment aids creativity and all, except the indolent make the best out of personal ingenuity.

The second is to disorientate with the resultant effect of debasing all that is decorous. Jungle laws become predominantly operational. No value is placed on hard work and everybody is expected to be skilled in peek-a-boo that will fetch no same a legacy of reward and benefits. A view for reform that will translate to societal good will be regarded as a malarkey, and this will attract a great obloquy.

We a jumble of the two elucidated above in our dear country, though this is predominant in the State of the Living Spring where for the first time we have a blue-blooded ex-serviceman in the Nigerian Army is at the helm of affairs. From all that I have seen happen, I have been dazed to my greatest imagination. His dutches has fondly taken affluence to the highest level of human operations, pomping merriment to an unimaginable volume and souching all women that matter in affluence obduracy.

The duo are full of charisma, strong enough to catapult any stubbornly moribund economy out of doldrums because they have touched all places around the globe that engender influence of greatness. I am sure anybody who knows them will count us lucky for the grace to access objects of prosperity and I think I would have been inebriated by reason of potential facts to be bought over without overtures for apology.
The turn of events has betrayed me, as the Amazonian appearance seems eclipsed in want of conviction that some empirical evaluation can unfold.

It will actually take a critical and closer look to fathom the true picture of the state of events as people are not divorced from news of deceit and the truth that is spoken is not heard because there is no medium of dissemination, and people are utterly helpless as the operational option is the blockade of their hearing device.

Whatever anybody’s idiosyncrasies are, what is important is the way such impact on the organized social structure. If it is beneficial, the society progresses and minds are at rest even if there is scarcity because this will be considered to be naturally conditional and that the passage of time will see to its extinction. If it is dysfunctional and counter-productive, everybody will appear bored with life as the situation is most likely to be chaotic and frustrating and it is the disappearance of it or lack of it that will prompt the ebullience that will radiate the faces of creatures that are morose and gloomy.

IF the present legacy is maintained, the life expectancy of our people will dwindle, so much that the absence of diseases and epidemics will no longer guarantee longevity, both of lives and of structure. Values will not endure and human identity will lose its essence, and the linkage between the past and the future will become extinct: The implication of this is that there will be no continuity as only logs of wood will be trailing our streets while men of substance and valour would have gone into oblivion.

Thuggery and hooliganism are today’s Osun State political emblem and they stand condemnable in their entirety. Assassination, victimization, framing and other vices will not blow us any good and these and other evil concupiscence that are prevalent in our political arena will only succeed in eroding succession principle which is paramount to national survival.

Condemnation awaits those who derive joy in the condemnable. God cannot in any way be fooled as it is people’s reaction to His testaments that will determine the nature of His attitude; whether it will be judgment or justification. Nobody owns his or her body and soul and they are accountable to their owner who will come in due season to give His verdict.

Evil doers are today called to repentance and it is God that is showing us His mercy. God has the discretional power to determine our fate including what happens to us hereafter.

By Samuel Ajani

Osun Tribunal: Myriad of Litigations

IT is ironic that after seven months of legal fireworks at the Osun Governorship Elections Tribunal, the petitioner and the respondent are seeking God’s intervention in the case. Tension had gripped Osogbo, the Osun State capital, 24 hours to the pronouncement of judgment even as offices; schools, shops and markets hurriedly closed on Monday, A bald-headed riot policeman reportedly attached to MOPOL 39 Unit, Stadium Area and identified as Wale, heightened tension in Ayetoro area of Osogbo on Monday evening when he shot into the air Pedestrians and traders scampered for safety when the apparently inebriated cop shrieked hysterically as he playfully chased a colleague about, shooting into the air. Police vehicles had paraded Osogbo major roads on Monday – in a show to highlight preparedness for any eventuality. The message was not lost on the citizenry most of whom stayed indoors on Tuesday.

Aregbesola, who is contesting the victory of Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola, in the April 14, 2007 governorship election in Osun State, opened his 1004-page petition on October 3, 2007, and closed it on May 15, 2008, after calling 102 witnesses and tendering 171 exhibits. Aregbesola sought nullification of election results in 12 of the 30 local government councils of the state. But the tribunal upheld the election in all the Councils just as it-retuned all AC and PDP legislators in the state and federal parliaments.

Events leading to the discrediting of the five-member tribunal led by Justice Thomas Naron, began with an allegation that the panel was deliberately shutting out evidence against the opposition. But the panel cited practice direction of the Electoral Act as the basis of its rulings, saying that petitions not frontloaded could not be heard. This position on Practice Direction, the tribunal said, informed its decision to reject admitting the forensic evidence it granted the Action Congress governorship candidate and petitioner, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola, an order to perform. Various counsels to the opposition, however, opposed the adherence to Practice Direction theory of the tribunal, saying that substantive (evidential) nature of law should supersede its technical aspect. The opposition, in essence, was saying that the tribunal was upholding the technical aspect of law and relegating the evidential aspect.

Events turned messier when AC lead counsel, Mr. Kola Awodehin (SAN), during the closing day of the tribunal, looked at the tribunal members in the face and pointedly accused them of colluding with the Peoples Democratic Party governor and respondent, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, to pervert justice. This followed the rejection of Awodehin’s prayer, which urged the tribunal to subpoena the Managing Director of telecommunications firm, MTN, to appear before the panel. Awodehin’s prayer came on the heels of the publication by a national magazine, TheNews, which accused the Chairman of the tribunal, Naron, and Justice Ekanem, of having surreptitious contacts with a counsel to Oyinlola, Chief Kunle Kalejaye (SAN).

TheNews, in its July edition, published a telephone call log, which allegedly transpired between Kalejaye and the two members of the tribunal. Awodehin said the rejection of his prayer ­was a rape of judicial process, stressing that the action underscored the allegations of comprise levelled against the tribunal. He said the petitioner was justified to call on the tribunal members to disqualify themselves from the petition.

“The judiciary is on trial. Why can’t MTN be compelled to come and show proof of the claim that the call logs did not emanate from it? The judiciary will be best served if the tribunal members disqualify themselves from the petition,” he said. He stormed out of the court even before the tribunal pronounced judgment on his prayers and later delivered judgment.

In this light, the AC sought the dissolution of the tribunal on the basis of the allegations of compromise but the PDP lead counsel, Chief Nathaniel Oke (SAN), described the call as an ambush of the judiciary. He maintained that the call was an attempt to arrest judgment. The PDP said the AC wanted a reconstitution of the tribunal so as to remedy the mistakes it made while filing the governorship petition.

As expected – going by various counsels’ submissions and the pronouncements of the tribunal during the trial period – the panel, in a judgment that lasted three hours, threw out the petition of Aregbesola on July 15, 2008.

The fallouts of the call log accusation, no doubt, took its toll on all members of the tribunal which included Justices Naron, Joe Ekanen, whose integrity and image were grossly impugned. All members of the panel received a deluge of phone calls and texts messages from relatives, colleagues, friends and associates – seeking clarification on the allegation even as they offered their sympathies.

They also received many threatening phone calls and text messages, which poured invectives on their persons – from those in sympathy with the opposition. Kalejaye was not left out of verbal threats over the phone and abusive text messages. The police stepped up security around Royal Hotel, Ilobu, where the tribunal members were lodged. Extra protection was also provided for Kalejaye’s family.

In the case of an allegation of corruption against an election petition tribunal, the National Judicial Counsel, upon receipt of a petition by the complaining party, will set up a three- member judicial panel, which will comprise s two judges and one lawyer, who must be a 2 SAN. The panel will conduct a close-door (investigation by telling the judges) accused to state their side of the case. The panel will later forward its findings and recommendations to the NJC. On the strength of the findings and recommendation, the NJC shall thus take action – either in favour or in disfavour of the petitioner and, or those accused.

If found guilty of the allegation, the NJC will recommend sanctions for the erring judges – and Kalejaye just as it would recommend the inauguration of another tribunal to hear the case afresh. Criminal charges await the publishers of TheNews if the published call logs were found to be untrue. It is believed in both the AC and PDP circles that the NJC is judiciously conducting its investigation into the allegation of corruption.

However, the recourse to nemesis has been highlighted by both the AC and the PDP. The National Vice Chairman of the PDP, South-West, Alhaji Tajudeen Oladipo, the state Deputy Chairman of the party, Mr Ojo Williams, state Secretary, Chief Yinka Adeojo, and the Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Defence, Chief Oluwole Oke, has described the AC as a party of the godless and the wicked, invoking God to punish the party for telling lies against Oyinlola, tribunal members and Kalejaye.

Oyinlola, popularly called Omoluabi (good-natured man) in many public gathering had said that he would never do anything to bring disrepute to the legacy and good name his late father, Oba Moses Oyinlola, left behind. But Aregbesola, who is referred to, by his supporters, as an embodiment of Oranmiyan – the Yoruba warrior prince that later became the king of Old Benin kingdom, in a statement which repudiated the judgment of the tribunal, said nobody steals from Oranmiyan!

He maintained that the wrath of God would be on any individual or group that allegedly plotted to deny the masses their electoral wish through rigging and judicial collusion. Although the Secretary to the tribunal, Mr Anthony Ezike, absolved the tribunal of compromise, the inability of the judges to seek legal redress, is a great hindrance on the individual rights of the judges. The accusing opposition party might have taken advantage of this inhibition to rubbish the integrity of the judges. The tribunal chairman, while delivering judgment in the governorship petition, said the panel was unfazed about the hoopla generated by media publications, stressing that his panel only considered the merits of the petition.

Both Kalejaye and TheNews have threatened to go to court over allegations of libel. Kalejaye, who feels strongly about the damage done to his reputation by TheNews publication, is reportedly gearing to do battle against magazine. But Kalejaye is yet to make good his threat as he is yet to file a summons in court to challenge the alleged libel. However, TheNews, which, accused Kalejaye and the Special Adviser and Chief Press Secretary to Oyinlola, Mr. Lasisi Olagunju, of libel, has written to the two personalities, through its lawyer, Prof Yemi Osibajo (SAN), seeking a public apology in national news dailies and demanding N200 million from them within seven days.

Specifically, Osibajo, who addressed the letter to Kalejaye and Olagunju, requested them to apologise for the series of publications which refuted TheNews publication on the call log and impugned the integrity of the magazine.

The new phase of litigation is expected to be backed by media hype and robust legal fees that would be charged by representing legal counsels. The state Deputy Chairman of PDP refused to disclose the amount spent by the party in prosecuting the governorship petition, saying that, “The PDP will disclose the amount it has spent on the governorship election petition if the AC makes public how much it has spent on the process.” Stalwarts of the AC declined to reveal the cost of the governorship petition.

The hearing of governorship election petition was widely given publicity in the media – so would the next stage of the unfolding libel litigation. Pray, in what way would the verdict of God be delivered? Is the answer located in the bowel of time?

• Culled from SUNDAY PUNCH

It’s Time For Presidency To Act

When the world shows in all ramifications that it is fast going to an end, it’s not likely that this phenomenon affects Nigeria alone because Nigeria alone is not and does not make the world. If Nigeria alone does not make the world then it stands to reason that the average fair life being enjoyed by people in the other parts of the world should also have a breeze of that comfort blown on Nigeria and Nigerians. Or is the saying of one of the writers for OSUN DEFENDER, that there are only three classes of people in the universe viz: the white, the black and Nigerians to be taken as a gospel truth? No, this should not be true but indications point to near-truth of that assertion and which patriots of this vast and giant country of Africa should wake up to falsify.

Or how can one explain the conspiratorial silence of action since the pre-delivery of July 15 Naron verdict in Osun State that the character involved in the fraud saga are not seen to be called to question or brought to answer for the charges against them by the Nigerian Judicial Council NJC, the Nigerian Bar Association NBA except the non-governmental bodies’ voices we hear speaking on the despicable state of things. Is Nigeria cursed? Is it that the wrongs perpetrated from the top are preventing the relevant agents concerned in bringing the culprits to book from acting. Indeed? Nigeria is sitting on a keg of powder should this conspiracy continue to stalk action.

The first Republic fell when Alhaji Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, in spite of the roof-fire in the West, refused to see the need to act positively. In the wake of that fracas, he (Balewa) was not spared. What happened then was hardly different from what is being experienced in Osun and some other states in Nigeria today.

I know that it’s not easy to be impartial when the air bier in a case is also a victim of electoral manipulation to power? What’s on ground calls for patriotism and boldness even at the detriment of the kind of elections that brought the Presidency to office because Nigerian nation transcends any individual and his office.

The smoke should not be allowed to inflame before a decisive step is taken on the petitions the AC and other parties’ candidates have in the kitty of the NJC, NBA etc.

It may sound funny to the beneficiaries of the largesse of governance that a plea such as this is being made – the few of them – but a veritable measuring rod of the situation of things is the level of poverty that pervades the state and where a fresh oil, windfall of N9 billion has just again been allocated to the thirty and one LGAs in the state, why should and must the common people be pauperized in the midst of plenty?

For purpose of reference, that Nigeria is calm is no sign that all is well but that she does not engage in violence for all and any slightest provocations.

The late Gen Sani Abacha did not see the signs on the wall that the people were not at ease, and when the peoples anger exploded, he could not contain it until he too was consumed. Even with armoury at his disposal – small. Issues consume the powerful – he got perished with it.

It may not be counted against any leader who got to power via illegality or by fraudulent elections if only he, as a person has his own integrity as Nigerians currently concede to President Umar Yar’Adua, can think of the consequences of imposition of leaders on free citizens that earn retired Olusegun Obasanjo the kind of banters being thrown at him today.

Voices of reason speak and it will be the greatest disservice to the citizenry of Nigeria if these voices that speak do not have allowance for thought by our leaders especially the President. The message should not be lost on us that we have a duty and that duty to shape up or allow the not – very – distant future to shore on us with ignominy.

Mr President Sir, I love this country Nigeria and would love you equally if you can put ineptitude to shame, come off the sloth of inaction, shake off the dull sloth and allow the three arms of government their independence of reasoning and action in matters like we have on hand in some states of Nigeria.

Your decision to let Bakassi Peninsula go is one of the right steps in the right direction. Should you allow the sycophants to sway you off, they would have caused you the wrath of the International Community and, you know, (where their wigs, are) before you know it, they would have vamoosed to neighbouring countries in the event of war. What is left of Nigeria today is more than enough for you to administer without Bakassi.

This same courage is necessary in matters of foot-dragging of Election Petitions tribunals on the 2007 elections.

A word is enough for the wise.

God save our country and us.

KOLAWOLE SAMUEL, Osogbo.

Petition Against His Excellency Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola At The Code Of Conduct Bureau, By 11 AC Lawmakers On Constituency Project Fraud

27th May, 2008.
Code of Conduct Bureau,
Federal Secretariat Complex,
Shehu Shagari Way,
Maitama,
FCT, Abuja.

Dear Sir,

Petition Brought Pursuant To Item 12, Part 1, Fifth Schedule To The Constitution Of Federal Republic Of Nigeria, 1999 Which Prescribes as follows:

‘Any allegation that a public Officer has committed a breach of or has not complied with the provisions of this Code shall be made to the Code of Conduct Bureau’

IN THE MATTER OF THE PETITION AGAINST CONTRAVENTIONS OF THE CODE OF CONDUCT FOR PUBLIC OFFICERS
BETWEEN:
1. HON. TIMOTHEW OWOEYE – ILESA WEST
2. HON. AJIBOYE ADEMOLA – ILA
3. HON. OYEDELE KAMIL TOPE – IREPODUN / OROLU
4. HON. SALAMI NAJEEM F. – EJIGBO
5. HON. BINUYO IPOOLA A. – IFE NORTH
6. HON. AKINTUNDE ADEGBOYE – OSOGBO
7. HON. FAFOWORA A. ABIODUN – ILESA WEST
8. HON. AWOLOLA A. ABIODUN – EGBEDORE
9. HON. SALENSILE R. AYOBAMI – IWO
10. HON. SAMSON FAFIYEBI – OBOKUN
11. HON. AJIBOLA OLAIDE K. – OLORUNDA

AND

HIS EXCELLENCY, PRINCE OLAGUNSOYE OYINLOLA
(The Executive Governor Osun State)

1.0 INTRODUCTION

1.1 We are counsel retained by the Petitioners to bring the contravention and/ or non compliance with the provisions of Item 9, Part 1, Fifth Schedule of the Constitution of the Federal Republic, 1999 by the Respondent to the notice of this Code of Conduct Bureau to assist you to investigate and recommend the Respondent for prosecution before the Code of Conduct Tribunal.

1.2 Your Petitioners are the honourable members of the Osun State House of Assembly who were elected under the platform of the Action Congress to represent the state constituencies appearing opposite their respective names. Your petitioners swore to uphold and observe the provisions of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

1.3 The Respondent is the incumbent Governor of Osun State, South West Nigeria, who was elected under the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party and who also swore to uphold and observe the provisions of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

1.4 This Petition is brought against the Respondent for contravention of Items 9, Part 1, Fifth Schedule to the 1999 Constitution.

2.0 CONTRAVENTIONS UNDERLYING THIS PETITION

2.1 The Respondent directed the payments of public funds into the private accounts of the 26 legislators in the Osun State House of Assembly to execute constituencies’ projects and thereby acted arbitrarily in contravention of the Constitution he swore to uphold and in clear abuse of powers.

2.2 Since the arbitrary acts referred to in Para. 2.1 above will affect the commonwealth i.e. the public funds belonging to the entire people of Osun State; the arbitrary act has affected the rights of the Petitioners to deliver on their electoral promises.

3.0 BACKGROUND FACTS

3.1 As part of the numerous steps to fulfil their electoral promises to their individual constituencies, members of Osun State House of Assembly recently passed resolutions directing the executives to undertake projects in each of the 26 Constituencies in the state (otherwise referred to as “Constituency projects’’).

3.2 It was further agreed that a dedicated consolidated accounts would be opened to allow for an equitable execution of the projects and ensure accountability, sound planning and execution of the projects and rid the projects of vices.

3.3 Rather strangely, on the 9th day of April, 2008, the Government of Osun State, under the leadership of the Respondent, His Excellency, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, directed the payments of the sum of N5Million each into the private accounts of the 26 legislators in the Osun State House of Assembly to enable them use the money to execute projects which they individually desired for their respective constituencies.

3.4 Particularly, the Petitioners informed us that they received credit alerts from their banks showing that their respective bank accounts had been credited with the sum of N5Milllion each by the Osun State Government on the said 9th day of April, 2008. It is however instructive to note that these lodgements were made without obtaining the consent of the Petitioners.

3.5 Convinced that their constitutional duties are broadly limited to law making and performance of the functions of overseeing the activities of other arms of government i.e. the executive and the judiciary, the Petitioners promptly returned the monies paid into their respective bank accounts to the Osun State Government through their letter dated 24-04-08, addressed to the Speaker of the House of Assembly and jointly signed by your Petitioners. They also persuaded their PDP counterparts to follow suit by returning the N5Million of the Osun State Government fund paid into their private accounts but they have refused to do so till date. Photocopies of the letter of 24-04-08, cheques, deposit slips and transfer forms with which Osun State Government paid N5Million into the Petitioners’ private accounts are herein attached as Schedules A to L.

4.0. HOW THE FACTS STATED ABOVE CONSTITUTE CONTRAVENTIONS AND/OR NON- COMPLIANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF THE CODE OF CONDUCT FOR PUBLIC OFFICERS
Contravention of Item 9, Part 1, Fifth Schedule
To the 1999 Constitution.

4.1 Item 9 provides that :
‘’a public officer shall not do or direct to be done, in abuse of his office, any arbitrary acts prejudicial to the rights of any other person knowing that such act is unlawful or contrary to any government policy.’’

4.2 We rely on the background facts to urge you to decide that the acts of the Respondents amount to a contravention of the Code of Conduct for Public Officers.

4.3 We submit that Item 9 reproduced above is designed to punish acts which amount to arbitrariness on the part of Public Officers. An act would be arbitrary if done in flagrant disregard of due process and the Constitution.

4.4 By Section 4(7) of the 1999 Constitution, the duties of the members of the House of Assembly of a state is to make laws for the peace, order and good government of the State. Also, while section
5(2)(a) vests the executive powers of a state in the Governor of the state, section 5(2)(b) of the same Constitution states that the executive powers of a state:
“ shall extend to the execution and maintenance of this Constitution, all laws made by the House of Assembly of the State, and to all matters with respect to which the House of Assembly has for the time being powers to make laws.’’

4.5 As a corollary to the law making powers of the House of Assembly of a state, Section 128 vests the House with oversight functions in the following words:

(1) subject to the provisions of this Constitution, a House of Assembly shall have power by resolution published in its journal or in the official Gazette of the Government of the State to direct or cause to be directed an inquiry or investigation into-

a.) any matter or thing with respect to which it has power to make laws; and

b.) the conduct of affairs of any person, authority, Ministry or government department charged, or intended to be charged with the duty of or responsibility for-

i. executing or administering laws enacted by the House of Assembly; and

ii. disbursing or administering moneys appropriated or to be appropriated by such House.

(2) The powers conferred on a House of Assembly under the provisions of this section are exercisable only for the purpose of enabling the House to-

a.) make laws with respect to any matter within its legislative competence and correct any defects in existing laws; and

b.) expose corruption, inefficiency or waste in the execution or administration of laws within its legislative competence and in the disbursement or administration of funds appropriated by it. (Underlining ours)

4.6 Part of the law which the House of Assembly is empowered to make is the Appropriation Act. The law making powers of the House of Assembly is so vast that until the House passes the appropriation bill into law, the government’s capacity to spend will be seriously hampered.

4.7 We submit that apart from their duties and responsibilities to make laws, the House of Assembly is empowered to investigate or inquire into the execution of projects and contract awards with a view to achieving the aims of Section 128(2), expose corruption, inefficiency or waste in the execution or administration of laws within its legislative competence and in the disbursement or administration of funds appropriated by it.

4.8 Therefore, the conclusion that it is not the duties and/ or responsibilities of the Respondents to execute projects but that of the executives is very apposite.

4.9 Thus, the legislators are not the public officers charged with the responsibilities of executing projects but the executives. The people of Nigeria in general and Osun State, in this case, deserve a government which rule according to the law and not according to whims and caprices. The right of the people to a decent government has therefore been breached. Also, the Petitioners, as well as the Respondent, equally swore to defend the Constitution and deliver on their electoral promises to their constituencies. This arbitrariness therefore amounts to a violation of the conscience of the electorate who placed them in their sacred duty of watching over the executives in their execution of the law and public projects.

4.10 Further, we urge you to consider the fact that the acts of the Respondent make nonsense of Section 128 of the 1999 Constitution which empowers the legislators to investigate and inquire into the execution of projects for which they have appropriated money.

4.11 Given that the Respondent knows or is presumed to know the extent of the constitutional functions of the legislators but went ahead to arbitrarily direct the payments of public funds into their private accounts to execute projects, he has done acts prejudicial to the rights to the petitioners and the people they represent. Since the acts are unconstitutional and arbitrary, we submit that they squarely fall within the ambit of acts punishable under the Code of Conducts for Public Officers.

4.12 As clearly stated in Section 128(2)(b), the essence of the legislative investigation and inquiry is to expose corruption, inefficiency and waste. We contend that what the Respondent has done has hampered or is capable of hampering the duties of the legislators under Section 128 of the Constitution and is tantamount to giving an unbridled license to waste, corruption and inefficiency.

5.0 RELIEFS SOUGHT BY THE PETITIONERS

5.1 In view of the foregoing, we respectfully pray this Code of Conduct Bureau as follows:

5.2 that the allegations of non-compliance and/or contraventions of Items 9, Part 1, Fifth Schedule to the 1999 Constitution brought against the Respondent be investigated by the Code of Conduct Bureau;

5.3 that the Respondent be recommended for prosecution by the Code of Conduct Tribunal pursuant to Item 15(1), Part 1 of the Fifth Schedule to the 1999 Constitution.

5.4 While pledging our co-operation in the investigation and prosecution of the Respondent herein, we urge that you do your part in making our system work, given that the problem of Nigeria is not in the scarcity of laws to sanitise our systems, but rather in the implementation of these laws.

5.5 This petition presents to you another valuable opportunity in history.

Thank you.
Yours faithfully,

TOPE ADEBAYO ESQ

Petition Against 15 Osun PDP Lawmakers At The Code Of Conduct Bureau, By 11 AC Lawmakers On Constituency Project Fraud

27th May, 2008.
Code of Conduct Bureau,
Federal Secretariat Complex,
Shehu Shagari Way,
Maitama,
FCT, Abuja,

Dear Sir,

Petition Brought Pursuant To Item 12, Part 1, Fifth Schedule To The Constitution Of Federal Republic Of Nigeria, 1999 Which Prescribes as follows:

‘Any allegation that a public Officer has committed a breach of or has not complied with the provisions of this Code shall be made to the Code of Conduct Bureau’

IN THE MATTER OF THE PETITION AGAINST CONTRAVENTIONS OF THE CODE OF CONDUCT FOR PUBLIC OFFICERS

BETWEEN:

1. HON. TIMOTHEW OWOEYE – ILESA WEST
2. HON. AJIBOYE ADEMOLA – ILA
3. HON. OYEDELE KAMIL TOPE – IREPODUN/OROLU
4. HON. SALAMI NAJEEM F. – EJIGBO
5. HON. BINUYO IPOOLA A. – IFE NORTH
6. HON. AKINTUNDE ADEGBOYE – OSOGBO
7. HON. FAFOWORA A. ABIODUN – ILESA WEST
8. HON. AWOLOLA A. ABIODUN – EGBEDORE
9. HON. SALENSILE R. AYOBAMI – IWO
10. HON. SAMSON FAFIYEBI – OBOKUN
11. HON. AJIBOLA OLAIDE K. – OLORUNDA

AND

1. HON. ADEJARE BELLO (SPEAKER) – EDE NORTH
2. HON. ROPO OYEWOLE ( D. SPEAKER) – IFE CENTRAL
3. HON. TAJUDEEN ADEYEMI (MAJORITY LEADER,) – IFELODUN
4. HON. ADEMOLA OGUNDEJI – BORIPE BOLUWADURO
5. HON. IDIAT BABALOLA – EDE SOUTH
6. HON. FEMI FAROUNBI – AYEDAADE
7. HON. SIKIRU ARAOYE – OLAOLUWA
8. HON. DIRAN AYANBEKUN – IFE SOUTH
9. HON. JOSHUA OGUNLEYE – ATAKUNMOSA EAST AND WEST
10. HON. OGUNLEYE OLATUNJI – ORIADE
11. HON. SAMUEL ABIODUN IDOWU – IFEDAYO
12. HON. ‘KUNLE OMOLOLA – AYEDIRE
13. HON. GBADEBO OYEJIDE – IREWOLE 1/ISOKAN
14. HON. DEGBOLA OYEKUNLE – ODO OTIN
15. HON. OLAJIDE ADEYEYE – IFE EAST

INTRODUCTION

1.1 We are counsel retained by the Petitioners to bring the contraventions and/ or non-compliance with the provisions of Items 1, 6 and 9, Part 1, Fifth Schedule of the Constitution of the Federal Republic, 1999 by the Respondents to the notice of this Code of Conduct Bureau with a view to assisting you to investigate and recommend the Respondents for prosecution before the Code of Conduct Tribunal.

1.2 Your Petitioners are the honourable members of the Osun State House of Assembly who were elected under the platform of the Action Congress to represent the state constituencies appearing opposite their respective names. Your petitioners swore to uphold and observe the provisions of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

1.3 The Respondents are also the honourable members of the Osun State House of Assembly who were elected under the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party to represent the state constituencies appearing opposite their respective names. The Respondents also swore to uphold and observe the provisions of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

1.4 This Petition is brought against the Respondents for contravening Items 1, 6 and 9, Part 1, Fifth Schedule to the 1999 Constitution.

2.0 Contraventions Underlying This Petition

2.1 The Respondents received public funds into their private purses to execute constituencies projects and thereby put themselves in a position where their personal interest to show off to their constituencies that they are performing as elected representatives conflict with their duties and responsibilities as law makers and persons meant to investigate and inquire into the proprietary or otherwise of the activities of the executives.

2.2 The Respondents used their positions as members of the Osun State House of Assembly to receive N5 Million each as benefits for their respective constituencies even when the Constitution does not empower them to directly confer such benefits on the people.

2.3 The Respondents acted arbitrarily when they received N5 Million each into their private accounts to perform the duties of execution of projects for their constituencies when they knew that it is not their constitutional duties to execute projects and when due process was and could never have been followed by them in the execution of such projects.

2.4 Since the arbitrary acts referred to in Para 2.3 above will affect the commonwealth i.e. the public funds belonging to the entire people of Osun State, the arbitrary act has affected the rights/obligations of the Petitioners, and even the Respondents to deliver on their electoral promises.

2.5 By collecting the said sum of N5Million each, the Respondents have also violated the conscience of the electorate who placed them in their sacred duty of watching over the executives in their execution of the law and public projects.

3.0 Background Facts

3.1 As part of the numerous steps to fulfil their electoral promises to their individual constituencies, members of the Osun State House of Assembly recently passed resolutions directing the executives to undertake projects in each of the 26 Constituencies in the state (otherwise referred to as “Constituency projects’’).

3.2 It was further agreed that a dedicated consolidated accounts would be opened to allow for an equitable execution of the projects and ensure accountability, sound planning and execution of the projects and rid the projects of vices.

3.3 Rather strangely, on the 9th day of April, 2008, the Government of Osun State, under the leadership of His Excellency, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, directed the payments of the sums of N5Million Naira each into the private accounts of the 26 legislators in the Osun State House of Assembly to enable them use the money to execute projects which they individually desired for their respective constituencies.

3.4 Particularly, the Petitioners informed us that they received credit alerts from their banks showing that their respective bank accounts had been credited with the sum of N5Milllion each by the Osun State Government on the said 9th of April, 2008. It is however instructive to note that these lodgements were made without obtaining the consents of the Petitioners.

3.5 Convinced that their constitutional duties are broadly limited to law making and performance of the functions of overseeing the activities of other arms of government i.e. the executive and the judiciary, the Petitioners promptly returned the monies paid into their respective bank accounts to the Osun State Government through their letter dated 24-04-08, addressed to the 1st Respondent and jointly signed by your Petitioners. They also persuaded their PDP counterparts to follow suit by returning the N5Million Naira of the Osun State Government fund paid into their private accounts but they have refused to do so till date. Photocopies of the letter of 24-04-08, Cheques, deposit slips and transfer forms with which Osun State Government paid N5Million Naira into the Petitioners’ private accounts are herein attached as Schedules A to L.

5.0 How The Facts Stated Above Constitute Contraventions And/ Or Non- Compliance With The Provisions Of the Code Of Conduct For Public Officers Contravention of Item 1, Part 1, Fifth Schedule To the 1999 Constitution.

5.1 From the documents attached to this petition and the facts stated hereinbefore, it is put beyond question that the Respondents accepted N5Million Naira paid into their private accounts by the Government of Osun State for the purpose of executing constituencies’ projects.

5.2 It is also undisputable that it is the personal interest of each of the Respondents to show their constituencies that they are working or performing. In so far as the execution of projects is not the duty of the Respondents, accepting public monies to execute projects amount to pursuing their personal interest. In other words, if the Constitution which the Respondents swore to uphold did not authorise them to do an act, doing the acts will be pursuing their personal interests and agenda.

5.3 Rather than show how well they represent their respective constituencies by concentrating on law making and performing the functions of oversights, they overstepped their boundaries by accepting public funds into their private accounts to execute projects.

5.4 By Section 4(7) of the 1999 Constitution, the duties of the members of the House of Assembly of a state is to make laws for the peace, order and good government of the State. Also, while section 5(2)(a) vests the executive powers of a state in the Governor of the state, section 5(2)(b) of the same Constitution states that the executive powers of a state:

    “shall extend to the execution and maintenance of this Constitution, all laws made by the House of Assembly of the State, and to all matters with respect to which the House of Assembly has for the time being powers to make laws.’’

5.5. As a corollary to the law making powers of the House of Assembly of a state, Section 128 vests the House with oversight functions in the following words:

(1) subject to the provisions of this Constitution, a House of Assembly shall have power by resolution published in its journal or in the official Gazette of the Government of the State to direct or cause to be directed an inquiry or investigation into-

    a.) any matter or thing with respect to which it has power to make laws; and
    b.) the conduct of affairs of any person, authority, Ministry or government department charged, or intended to be charged with the duty of or responsibility for-
    i. executing or administering laws enacted by the House of Assembly; and
    ii. disbursing or administering moneys appropriated or to be appropriated by such House.

(2) The powers conferred on a House of Assembly under the provisions of this section are exercisable only for the purpose of enabling the House to-

    a.) make laws with respect to any matter within its legislative competence and correct any defects in existing laws; and
    b.) expose corruption, inefficiency or waste in the execution or administration of laws within its legislative competence and in the disbursement or administration of funds appropriated by it (Underlining ours)

5.6. Part of the law which the House of Assembly is empowered to make is the Appropriation Act. The law making powers of the House of Assembly is so vast that until the House passes the appropriation bill into law, the government’s capacity to spend will be seriously hampered.

5.7. We submit that apart from their duties and responsibilities to make laws, the House of Assembly is empowered to investigate or inquire into the execution of projects and contracts awards with a view to using the words of Section 128(2), expose corruption, inefficiency or waste in the execution or administration of laws within its legislative competence and in the disbursement or administration of funds appropriated by it.

5.8. Therefore, the conclusion that it is not the duties and/or responsibilities of the Respondents to execute projects but that of the executives is very apposite.

5.9. Now Item 1, Part 1, 5th Schedule to the 1999 Constitution provides as follows:
“a public officer shall not put himself in a position where his personal interest conflicts with his duties and responsibilities’’

5.10. By accepting public funds into their private accounts to execute projects for their constituencies, we submit that each of the Respondents have put themselves in a position where their personal interests (not public interest since the act is unconstitutional) conflict with their duties and responsibilities.

5.11. Section 128 of the 1999 Constitution is clear on the oversight functions of the legislature, including the Respondents herein, and the ends the oversight function is designed to achieve. Since the ends are to expose corruption, inefficiency and waste, how can the Respondents achieve this when they are the dramatis personae whose activities are to be investigated? Put in another way, does it not amount to the Respondents putting themselves in a position where they are judges in their own cause if they execute projects and investigate whether same was carried out under an atmosphere devoid of waste, inefficiency and corruption?. We therefore submit that by accepting to execute projects, the Respondents have put themselves in a position where their personal interests conflict with their duties and responsibilities under Section 128 of the 1999 Constitution.
Contravention of Item 6(1), Part 1, Fifth Schedule
To the 1999 Constitution.

5.12. Item 6(1) provides that: “A public officer shall not ask for or accept property or benefits of any kind for himself or any other person on account of anything done or omitted to be done by him in the discharge of his duties”.

5.13. We rely on the statement of facts and the submission made hereinbefore.

5.14. From the background facts, the followings points are not in dispute:

5.14.1.1 that the Respondents are legislators;

5.14.1.2 that the Respondents were paid N5Million each to execute constituencies’ projects because they are legislators;

5.14.1.3 that the N5Million amounts to benefits meant to be conferred on the people of the individual constituencies of the Respondents;

5.14.1.4 that the act of the Respondents in accepting to execute projects clearly violates the provisions of Section 4 and 5 of the 1999 Constitution, amongst others;

5.14.1.5 that the Respondents received the N5Million Naira each personally.

5.15 We therefore submit that the acts of the Respondents contravene the provisions of Item 6(1), Part 1, Fifth Schedule to the 1999 Constitution.
Contravention of Item 9, Part 1, Fifth Schedule
To the 1999 Constitution

5.16 Item 9 provides that : a public officer shall not do or direct to be done, in abuse of his office, any arbitrary acts prejudicial to the rights of any other person knowing that such act is unlawful or contrary to any government policy.

5.17 We rely on our submissions above and the background facts to urge you to decide that the acts of the Respondents amount to a contravention of the Code of Conduct for Public Officers.

5.18 We submit that the Item 9 is designed to punish acts which amount to arbitrariness on the part of Public Officers. An act will be arbitrary if done in flagrant disregard of due process and the Constitution.

5.19 As demonstrated above, the Respondents are not the officers charged with the responsibilities of executing projects but the executives. The people of Nigeria in general and Osun State, in this case, deserve a government which rule according to the law and not according to whims and caprices. The right of the people to a decent government has therefore been breached. Also, the Petitioners, as well as the Respondents, equally swore to defend the Constitution and deliver the goods to their constituencies. This arbitrariness therefore amounts to a violation of the conscience of the electorate who placed them in their sacred duty of watching over the executives in their execution of the law and public projects.

5.20 Further, we urge you to hold that the acts of the Respondents make nonsense of Section 128 of the 1999 Constitution which empowers the legislators to investigate and inquire into the execution of projects for which they have appropriated money.

5.21 As clearly stated in Section 128(2)(b), the essence of the legislative investigation and inquiry is to expose corruption, inefficiency and waste. We contend that anything that hampers the Respondents duties under Section 128 will be giving an unbridled license to waste, corruption and inefficiency.

6.0 Reliefs Sought By The Petitioners

6.1 In view of the foregoing, we respectfully pray this Bureau as follows:

6.1.1.1 that the allegations of non-compliance and/or contraventions of Items 1, 6 and 9, Part 1, Fifth Schedule to the 1999 Constitution brought against the Respondents be investigated by the Code of Conduct Bureau;

6.1.1.2 that the Respondents be recommended for prosecution by the Code of Conduct Tribunal pursuant to Item 15(1), Part 1 of the Fifth Schedule to the 1999 Constitution.

6.2 While pledging our co-operation in the investigation and prosecution of the Respondents herein, we urge that you do your part in making our system work, given that the problems of Nigeria is not in the scarcity of laws to sanitise our systems but rather it is in the implementation of these laws.

6.3 This petition presents to you another valuable opportunity in history.

Thank you.
Yours faithfully,

TOPE ADEBAYO ESQ.

Play No Politics With Oladiran, Other’s, Group Tells Owolade

Osun State Commissioner for Justice and Attorney – General, Mr Niyi Owolade has been warned against playing politics with the arrest and prosecution of Mr Gani Oladiran and his co – travellers being accused of raping a seventeen – year old secondary school girl, Miss Tosin Ajakaiye.

This warning was handed down by a youth group based in the state, Youth Democratic Initiative (YDI) in a communiqué issued at the end of its emergency general meeting held in Osogbo, the state capital and made available to OSUN DEFENDER.

The YDI emergency meeting, according to the communiqué, has become necessary in view of recent development in the state bordering on social security and political development.

The group, as contained in the communiqué, warned that the action of the accused rapists, among whom was included, a man, Gani Oladiran, old enough to be a grand-father to the innocent girl, Tosin Ajakaye, the victim, should not be swept under the carpet like all past cases involving Osun State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) members.

“Responsible citizens of the country should speak with one voice at this material time to prevail on the ruling – PDP not to venture sweep the rape case under the carpet as it had done on cases involving its members in the past,” the group observed.

While condemning the action of the alleged rapists, the youth group lamented the involvement of Oladiran, a man considered to be old enough to be Tosin’s grandfather in such an inhuman act, the YDI then advised the state ministry of justice to use the accused as scape goats and further serve as deterrent to other would-be rapists.

According to the group, the involvement of an old man in such dastardly act is a reflection of the kind of individuals making up the ruling PDP, which is believed in some quarters to have in its fold a nest of killers.

On the state of security in Osun State, the YDI as a group admonished the state embattled Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola to concentrate his efforts on ensuring safely for lives and properties in the state.

The YDI further reminded the governor on the need to be less extravagant in running the affairs as his days in office become numbered with every passing second.

By KAYODE AGBAJE

Constituency Allowance Fraud: Osun AC Lawmakers Drag PDP Legislators To Conduct Tribunal

THE era of collective corruption, where the executive would be treating the State House of Assembly as an annex appears to be over in Osun State, as the 11 lawmakers on the platform of the Action Congress (AC) have petitioned the Code of Conduct Bureau on the N75 million the state government allegedly lodged into the private salary accounts of the 15 lawmakers on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

According to the petition signed by the AC lawmakers’ lawyer, Mr Tope Adebayo, the action of the PDP lawmakers, in collecting the N5 million largesse each, under the guise of Constituency Development Fund, was contrary to the provisions of items 1,6, and 9 of the fifth schedule of the 1999 constitution.

The AC parliamentarians then charged the bureau to set a machinery in motion, saying that the only way to halt arbitrary spending of public fund by the people in the position of authority, is to prosecute those who are converting the public money into their private use; noting that PDP lawmakers have violated some sections of the code.

They claimed that the PDP lawmakers took the second tranch of the controversial CDF fund, making N10 million each for individual lawmakers, only to show off at their constituencies as if they were performing.
“The respondents acted arbitrarily when they received N5 million each into their private accounts to perform the duties of execution of projects for their constituencies when they knew that they do not have the constitutional duties to execute projects,” the petition read.

It would be recalled that the 11 AC lawmakers on the instruction of their party quickly refunded the N55 million reportedly lodged into their personal salary accounts as CDF, a situation that compelled them to petition the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate the questionable lodgment.

The petition was signed by Timothy Owoeye (Ilesa West), Ademola Ajiboye (Ila), Tope Oyedele (Irepodun.Orolu) Salami Najeem (Ejigbo), Binuyo Ipoola (Ife North), Akintunde Adegboye (Osogbo), Fafowora Abiodun (Ilesa East), Awolola Abiodun (Egbedore), Salisile Ayobami (Iwo), Samson Fafiyebi (Obokun) Ajibola Olaide (Olorunda).

The AC lawmakers further stated that: “By accepting public funds into their private accounts to execute projects for their constituencies, we submit that each of the respondents (PDP lawmakers) have put themselves in a position, where their personal interest conflict with their duties and responsibilities.”

Reacting on the development, Honourable Oguntola Toogun, a chieftain of AC in the state said that the Code of Conduct Tribunal has the right to investigate and declare the seats of the guilty vacant before the prosecution.

“I think our lawmakers took the step rightly to correct the iniquities raging on in the State House of Assembly. If the Code of Conduct does its job right, it is capable of declaring the seats of the offenders vacant; which the EFCC cannot do and later prosecution will follow”, said Toogun.

By GOKE BUTIKA

PDP Thug Harasses OSUN DEFENDER Cameraman At Iwopopo Procession

ONE Mr. Kola Olomide, a suspected political thug from Olorunda Local Government Council Area of Osogbo was thoroughly dusted on Monday, as his empty boast to arrest OSUN DEFENDER photo-journalist Mr. Gbenga Adeniyi was quickly deflated by the men of the State Security Service (SSS) at Iwopopo celebration.

The venue was road match ritual performed annually as part of a week-long celebration of Osun Osogbo Festival witnessed by legions of worshippers, foreign tourists, dignitaries from far and near and a galaxy of journalists, struggling to catch the side of their stories.

Olomide, who was at the event as one of the on-lookers reportedly spotted OSUN DEFENDER photographer and rose from the obscurity where he was struggling to watch the colourful performance of the traditional dancers to challenge the right of our photo-journalist to cover the spectacular event.

Like a Rambo on the loose, he quickly ran to the SSSmen, begging them to arrest our man; but was asked to identify himself and what gave him the audacity, but information has it that he quickly cog his tail within his bottom flap when Adeniyi brought out his identity card, saying that he was a journalist.

While OSUN DEFENDER man won and forged on with his statutory duty, Olomide, who could not identify himself identify himself disappeared into the thicken crowd; but with a promise that he would personally deal with our man.

Kola Olomide, a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), a notable political thug had run a moribund printing press at Kola Balogun Area of Osogbo before he finally sought refuge in politics for survival.

By GOKE BUTIKA