October 4, 2023

The interim chairman of the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON), Alh. Abdullahi Shuaibu has alleged his predecessor, Kolade Alabi of conniving with some regulatory agencies and contractors/consultants to deduct the monthly allocations of the 774 Local Governments from the federation account for jobs not done and consultancy not rendered.

He also accused the former ALGON chair of faction with few members to bypass and misrepresent the interest of the legitimate body and therefore sabotaging its effort towards growth and development.

Recall that there is an ongoing leadership tussle among members of the association before a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja.

This was disclosed in a statement jointly signed by members of the ALGON and made available to newsmen over the weekend.

He further questioned how few people in the name of ALGON would on behalf of the 774 Local Governments in Nigeria, and either enter a consultancy or contract agreement running into billions with a crony consultant or contractor as the case may be, without the consent and approval of the 774 Local Governments.

He said that the Paris Club Refund whose payment totaling the sum of 135 Million Dollars (92.5 Billion) has started in the month and is being paid to one Hon. Munir Ned Nwoko as a consultant to facilitate the payment of the Paris Club Refund in the name of the association without the consent of the 774 Local Governments in the country.

Furthermore, he explained that ALGON just like the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) are associations duly registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission with the sole objective of protecting the interest of its members.

He said: “The Kolade Alabi led factional exco went further to issue a certificate of no objection to Central Bank of Nigeria authorizing the deduction of the fund on monthly installment from January 2021 till 2030 (a decade). To say the future of our unborn generation is being mortgaged is to say the least. Central Bank of Nigeria with its team of legal practitioners (both external and in house counsel), claimed to be acting on a valid court judgment and deliberately misrepresented to the Presidency to sanction the transaction on the premise that there is a valid court judgment which doesn’t necessarily require the consent of ALGON to comply with, thereby creating the impression that ALGON’s consent is a surplus age.”

He expressed surprise that he couldn’t get how ALGON had an account with the CBN that it can authorize payment for 10 years, stating that “it is difficult to assume CBN and other agencies are not playing ball with the so-called consultant on this issue”.

He added, “With due respect to Central Bank of Nigeria, the position as stated by them is incorrect and a deliberate ploy to serve a pre-determined objective.

“We are of the firm view that it is a double standard on their part, as they’re telling Nigerians that they need the consent of ALGON to pay and comply with the judgment of Dogra Consulting a case which CBN is a party to, and it is not necessary to get such consent to pay Hon. Munir Ned Nwoko in a case they are not a party to.

“The same CBN that filed appeal number SC/CV/678/2020 at the Supreme Court against Dogra Consulting Limited to stop the payment of about 135 Million Dollars from the Federation account is clearly conniving to such deductions without protocol.

“It is not surprising that Hon. Munir Ned Nwoko is making a case for Hon. Kolade Alabi as the legitimate ALGON factional leadership, despite Hon. Kolade Alabi not being a Local Government Chairman of any of the 774 Local Governments recognized by the ALGON constitution and the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 but a Chairman of a mere Local Council Development Authority created by Lagos State House of Assembly.

“With the ongoing analysis, it can safely be said that the C BN now reserves the right to pick judgments of courts to comply with, depending on the arrangement.

“It can also be concluded that a factional group within ALGON can continue to reap the respective Local Governments of funds in perpetuity, despite ALGON not having any business with C. B. N. whatsoever.

“It is rather unfortunate that some lawyers including some Senior Advocates of Nigeria through a full-page paid advert on Dailytrust newspaper declared on behalf of Hon. Munir Ned Nwoko that the ALGON IMC is illegal, and they affirmed the Hon. Kolade Alabi led factional exco playing ball with their client.

“Of course, Hon. Kolade Alabi not being from any of the 774 Local Governments recognized by the Constitution will not see anything wrong with authorizing such deductions from their account to his allies. The question CBN should be asked is which Local Government is Hon. Kolade Alabi from, before he could even mandate such deductions.

“It will be turning logic on its head to believe the position of Hon. Munir Ned Nwoko’s affirming Hon. Kolade Alabi as ALGON President despite the pendency of the case on the leadership tussle of ALGON pending at High Court of FCT No 31 and was adjourned to 23rd March 2021 at the instance of Hon. Kolade Alabi’s counsel.

“Despite knowing the legal profession as a noble profession and a system of justice, but it’s a shame that the same system is degrading with its counsel to sign a newspaper publication declaring as illegal what has appeared before a court of competent jurisdiction for pronouncement. How will they persuade a common man to respect our revered and cherished temple of justice? As a simple duly diligence at the Court’s registry will reveal the pendency of the matter in court to them; although, it is not impossible they are aware of the pendency of the case but still tow the path of desecrating our revered temple of justice.

“It will amount to dignifying the
the publication itself by responding to it, as it affirms our position as regards the relationship between Hon. Kolade Alabi and the marauding cabals trying to finish our third tier of Government.

“How can a person that claimed all the 774 Local Governments be engaged as a consultant through which their respective letters refused to take the respective Local Governments that engaged him to court when default occurred, rather, he sued ALGON as a separate person in law to sign terms of the settlement and authorize payment from the accounts of the people that purportedly engaged him.

“I am tempted to say that with this kind of scenario, we are not ripe for Local Government autonomy, and call on the Governor of the respective states to intervene and ensure the respective Local Governments which they have a supervisory role over are not financially killed by the marauding cabals.

“Though, we have got in touch with some Local Governments to file necessary documents to stop the payments, as we will not fold our hands and allow the deductions to go on for a decade and so all legal and political machinery had been put in place to stop further deductions.

“It’s a relief that this is also a genuine agitation like the one we have done that stopped the payment of Sixty-One Billion Naira to a contractor for the un-executed Primary Health Care jobs for the respective Local Governments across the country.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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