By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
Oyo State chapter of the Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN), has advocated refund of salaries and allowances collected by the sacked Oyo local government Chairmen while serving as Caretaker Chairmen in the state under the administration of late Senator Abiola Ajimobi.
The party in a statement by its Oyo state Secretary, Comrade Ayodeji Adigun stressed that this became imperative in view of the fact that the said salaries and allowances were “illegally” earned by them considering the illegality and the unconstitutionality of Caretaker Chairmen at the local government.
SPN pointed out in the statement that “virtually all the successive governments in the State, regardless of the pro-capitalist party, has in one way or another indulged in the unlawful practice of imposing caretaker chairmen as the head of Local Government Administration. “
” Most of the sacked APC Chairmen, were Caretaker Chairmen under the Abiola Ajimobi-led government at least at one time or another within the period of 7 years. It is in the light of this we of the SPN hold that those individuals among the embattled APC chairmen who had previously held the office as caretaker Chairmen have no moral credibility to enjoy the benefit of the Supreme Court judgement, ” it said.
The party added, ” SPN welcomes the judgment specifically because it vindicates our Party’s age-long position that the practice of imposing caretaker Chairmen as the heads of the local government administration in the state and across the country is undemocratic apart from being illegal and unconstitutional. It brazenly denies the ordinary people their fundamental rights to democratically choose their own leaders”.
” With this judgement, it is very clear that all of the salaries and allowances earned by any individual who had functioned at one time or another as caretaker chairmen in the State regardless of the government behind their appointment is illegal and unlawful. Therefore, we demand the refund of all of their illegally earned salaries and allowances throughout the period of their respective tenure and the retrieved fund must be subjected to public use under a democratic control and management of a committee that will include the elected representatives of the workers of the local governments and communities”
The party maintained, ” we at SPN welcomes the recent Supreme Court’s judgement against the sack by the Engr Seyi Makinde/PDP-led government of the previous Abiola Ajimob local Government Chairmen. However, we remain consistent in our view that the then APC formed council chairmen were fraudulently elected through the electoral sham perpetrated by the then Ajeigbe-led OYSEIC and that the affected chairmen and councillors should have been removed from office through a Court process, not through the display of executive rascality by the current Engr. Seyi Makinde- PDP government that suddenly pronounced a sack of the so called chairmen without recourse to the rule of law.”