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Akeredolu Signs LCDA Bill Into Law



Ondo State Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu has assented to the bill creating 33 Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) in the state.

The bill was presented to the Governor for assent by the Speaker of the House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Oladiji Landmark Olamide , during a brief ceremony.

The Deputy Speaker, Rt. Hon. Prince Abayomi Babatunde Akinruntan ; Majority Leader, Hon. Oluwole Emmanuel Ogunmolasuyi ; and the Parliamentary Secretary, Hon. Otunba Moyinolorun Ogunwumiju were also present.

With the governor’s assent, the bill, which had already been passed by the state House of Assembly, now possesses the legal backing for the creation of the LCDAs in Ondo State.

The establishment of these LCDAs marks a substantial step towards fulfilling Governor Akeredolu’s campaign promises and addressing the aspirations of the people for enhanced grassroots development

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Lagos seeks youth involvement in tackling security challenges



The Lagos State Government has stressed the need to involve a greater percentage of youths in addressing security challenges to ensure a safer and secure environment.

This was disclosed in a statement posted on the website of the Lagos State Government on Saturday.

According to the statement, the Secretary to the State Government, Bimbola Salu-Hundeyin, made the call on Friday during her maiden meeting with the leadership of the Police Community Relations Committee, Lagos State Command held at the Cabinet Office, Alausa, Ikeja.

It read, “The SSG told the PCRC Chairman, Kehinde Showemimo, and the Supervising Heads of the 14 Area Commands that statistics have proven that Nigeria has a huge youth population and to enjoy the demographic dividends, the youth must be positively engaged as the future of the nation.

“She said, ‘The youths are known for their strength and energetic presence anywhere they are, and bringing them on board will further make the work of the PCRC and other stakeholders easier.’

“She added that the youths are also technologically savvy and can bring their knowledge to bear in the area of infrastructural security that will further change the narratives of security in Lagos State and Nigeria.

“The youths can also be engaged in carrying out the PCRC mandate of interfacing between the Police and the citizens.”

Salu-Hundeyin also used the opportunity to assure residents and investors of adequate security through collaboration with PCRC and other security agencies to enable a more secure Lagos.

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Anti-Corruption Day: EFCC vows to adopt prevention-focused approach strategy against corruption



The Sokoto zonal command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has announced that it has exceeded its target of 60%.

It said that the target was set in order to adopt a prevention-focused approach rather than a prosecution-focused one, adding that increased focus on prevention is aimed at upholding professionalism and ensuring strict adherence to the rule of law and helping restore investor confidence and promoting economic growth.

Speaking at the weekend in Sokoto in commemoration of the 2023 International Anti-Corruption Day, ACE I Aliyu Yunusa, the zonal commander of the commission, stated that the commission is primarily focusing on responsive perspectives in order to advance its cause against corruption and other financial crimes.

He said: “We are committed to working with corruption preventive template recommended by UNCAC through active professional collaboration and synergy with relevant stakeholders and ensure strict adherence to rule of law in all activities of the commission.

“This has braced our abilities in the command to achieve remarkable success hence exceeding our target. Currently, we have achieved not less than 80% prosecution.”

While noting that corruption was a threat to the growth and development of individuals and nations, Yunusa said: “No one is immune to the contagion of corruption which is why nations are united in finding solutions to the common ailment.

“This, we have to as a commission, be more diligent and resourceful in our assigned tasks and will not fail to punish infractions traceable to unethical practices.

“We must also seek new ways to identify with the clarion for unity by UNCAC to enable us to destroy all threats to development in our nation.”

The Sokoto zonal command, in collaboration with ICPC and CCB officials, organized a reawakening sensitization campaign trek against corruption.

The theme of this year’s event is “UNCAC @ 20”.

The trek covered a distance of over 2 km, starting from Sama Road, going through Gusau Road, Lodge Road, Garba Duba Road, and finally terminating at the Commission’s Zonal Headquarters. The event was attended by CSOs, NYSC clubs advocating for zero tolerance to corruption, integrity organs, youths, and student anti-corruption clubs from various institutions across the state.

He added: “We are united against corruption, Let unite against the demon of you see or hear something, say something, and EFCC, ICPC, CCB will do something”, these were some of the inscriptions on the banners displayed during the sensitization trek that attracted the attention of residents in the caliphate.”

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A-court orders Makinde to pay N3.3bn outstanding balance to ex-LG officials



The Court of Appeal in Abuja has affirmed the April 27 decision of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), ordering the Oyo State governor, Seyi Makinde, to pay the outstanding balance of N3,374,889,425.60 (N3.4b) from the N4,874,889,425.60 (N4.9b) debt, arising from a May 7, 2021 judgment of the Supreme Court.

The N4,874,889,425.60 debt arose from the judgment of the Supreme Court, given against Makinde, the state’s Attorney-General, Accountant-General and four others in an appeal by chairmen and councillors elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), but sacked on May 29, 2019 by Makinde, upon assuming office.

In a unanimous judgment yesterday, a three-member panel of the Court of Appeal deplored Makinde’s conduct, which it described as disrespectful of the nation’s judicial system.

The appellate court, upheld that arguments by the lawyer to the ex-council chiefs, Musibau Adetunbi (SAN), resolved the two issues identified for determination against the appellants and dismissed the appeal filed by Makinde and six others for lacking in merit.

The court awarded N50 million cost against Makinde and the other appellants, to be paid to the ex-council chiefs led by Bashorun Mojeed Bosun Ajuwon.

The judgment was on the appeal marked: CA/595/2023 filed by Makinde, the Oyo State’s Attorney General, the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Accountant General of Oyo State, Speaker of Oyo State House of Assembly, the House of Assembly and Oyo State Independent Electoral Commission (OYSIEC).

In the lead judgment, Justice Danlami Senchi, held that as against the contention by the appellants, there was no dispute in relation to the amount that constituted the judgment debt.

The judge referred to a letter written on December 13, 2021 by the Attorney General of Oyo State, where the state put the salaries and allowances due to the ex-council chiefs at N4,874,889,425.60 and pledged to pay everything within six months.

He said the court could not allow Oyo State Government and its officials to approbate and reprobate, blow hot and cold at the same time by claiming the amount constituting the debt was not ascertained despite the letter by the AG and the fact that the appellants took steps to settle the debt by making part payment.

Justice Senchi also faulted the appellants’ contention that the ex-council chiefs failed to first obtain the consent of the Oyo State Attorney General before initiating a garnishee proceeding to seize the state’s funds to settle the judgment debt.

The judge said asking the ex-council chiefs to first seek and obtain the consent of the Oyo AG, (he is one of the judgment debtors) amounts to making him to be a judge in his own case, which requirement is unfair to the judgment creditors.

The ex-council chiefs were in order to have initiated the garnishee proceeding, because there was a judgment debt to be paid by the appellants by virtue of the judgment of the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court had, in its May 7, 2021 judgment, declared the ex-council chiefs, who sued through 11 representatives, led by Bashorun Majeed Ajuwon, as unlawful and ordered the Oyo State Government to compute and pay them their entitled salaries and allowances within three months of the judgment.

Rather than comply with the judgment, the Oyo State Government paid only N1.5 billion, prompting the judgment creditors (the ex-council chiefs) to initiate a garnishee proceeding against Makinde and others before the High Court of the FCT.

In the April 27 ruling, Justice A. O. Ebong of the High Court of the FCT issued a garnishee order absolute, directing Makinde and others to pay the balance of the judgment debt on installment basis, beginning with N1,374,889,425.60 to be paid immediately.

Justice Ebong ordered them to subsequently pay the remaining N2b at N500m quarterly, with the first installment payable on July 31, 2023, a decision Makinde and others challenged at the Court of Appeal.

It is the April 27 ruling by Justice Ebong that the Court of Appeal affirmed in the judgment delivered on Friday

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