22nd July, 2011
A self-styled anti corruption activist, Mr. Emmanuel Ebirim, who blew the whistle on the alleged financial scams perpetrated by the Chief Registrar of the Veterinary Council of Nigeria, Dr. Daniel Maddo, which led to the arrest and prosecution of the Chief Registrar over an alleged misappropriation of N90 million, has taken his battle against the Board of the Veterinary Council of Nigeria to another level.
Mr. Ebirim is challenging the illegal constitution and operation of the Board of the Veterinary Council whose existence, he claimed, is against the statutory requirement of the law.
In a letter authored by Mr. Ebirimâ€™s lawyer, M. A. Ofeoshi to the Minster of Agriculture with reference number MA/FMA/ABJ/20/11 dated 20th July, 2011, the anti corruption crusader stated that section 2 (a) to (d) of the Veterinary Surgeons Decree of 1969 and section 2(a) to (f) of the Veterinary Surgeons Amendment Decree of 1987 made it clearly mandatory for the terms and conditions to be fulfilled for a valid constitution of the Councilâ€™s Board but that the present Board has been operating without following the statutory requirement especially regarding the appointment of at least four members by the Minister of Agriculture.
He demanded for the immediate dissolution of the illegal Board for non compliance with statutory pre-conditions for its constitution.
Mr. Ebirim further prayed the Minister of Agriculture to exercise his powers to dissolve the illegal Board operating at the Veterinary Council to make way for the constitution of a valid Board.
His grouse with the Board may not be unconnected with the refusal of the Board to place the embattled Registrar on interdiction following his arraignment before an Abuja High Court on an alleged conversion of funds belonging to the Veterinary Council to his personal use.
The Registrar, Dr. Daniel Maddo, was docked alongside two former staff of the Council.
Soon after the court granted bail to the Registrar, he resumed at his duty post at the Veterinary Council to the consternation of the anti-corruption crusader who promptly authored a letter to the President of Council demanding that the embattled Registrar be placed on interdiction pending his trial.
Findings indicate that the Agric ministerâ€™s office is in receipt of the letter but that the minister is yet to act on the letter.
â€”Nnamdi Felix / Abuja