Local Government (LGAs) and Local Council Development Authorities (LCDAs) chairmen under the aegis of Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON), Oyo state chapter, have rejected their sack by Governor Seyi Makinde.
They said they remained the democratically-elected chairmen and still report to offices as such.
The chairmen told reporters on Thursday that there is a subsisting valid court order, which prohibited the governor or even the House of Assembly from dissolving elected local council authorities in the state.
Makinde had upon his inauguration on Wednesday night dissolved all the Local Government and Local Council Development Area authorities with immediate effect.
Oyo Chairman of ALGON, Prince Ayodeji Abass-Aleshinloye, who spoke on behalf of the chairmen, described the dissolution of the local council authorities by the Governor as unconstitutional and a violation of a subsisting court order.
He vowed the chairmen will continue to resume to their various offices and continue acting in their capacities as democratically elected by their constituents.
He stated they were armed with court injunction that legalises their election as council chairmen.
He however appealed to the affected council bosses to remain calm in the face of what he described as ‘assault’.
Some of the Chairmen at the press conference include: Yomi Adefusi (Ibadan West LCDA); Bisi Oladeji (Oyo West); Niyi Adeagbo (Itesiwaju); Samuel Egunjobi (Iganna LCDA) and Bosun Ajuwon (Ibadan North).
Others were: Olayinka Jesutoye (Ogo Oluwa); Akeem Akintunde (Egbeda); Habib Ibrahim (Ibarapa Central) and Yinka Adeyemi (Ajorosun LCDA).
Abass-Aleshinloye said: “ALGON, Oyo State rejects unconstitutional act of Mr. Governor. It is illegal, undemocratic, violation of rule of law and contempt of a subsisting court injunction against any dissolution of the Local Government as ordered by Justice A.A. Aderemi of High Court 2, Ibadan, Oyo State, on May 6, 2019.
“The Governor’s action is a crude breach of the right of our people to be democratically governed at local government level as the third tier of government as copiously stated in section 7(1) of the 1999 constitution as amended.
“Under no law can a state Governor make a declaration, proclamation or directive to summarily dissolve elected local government council or any elected organ of governance created by the constitution.
“We hereby appeal to all the duly elected chairmen of local government and local council development areas, councilors and citizens in these respective councils to remain calm and be peaceful in the face of this provocation and assault on constitutional democracy.”
Lawyer to the association, Barrister Kunle Sobaloju, said the action of the governor is null and void because there is a valid court judgment that has not been vacated, adding that until they challenge the judgment, the dissolution order is of no consequence.
Sobaloju vowed to resist by lawful means any one that want to stop the chairmen and councillors from performing their constitutional roles.