Fashola To Block Return Of Ex-LG Bosses

Babatunde Fashola

Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State

Kazeem Ugbodaga

Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State
Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State

There are indications that Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State, western Nigeria, may block the return of some immediate past local government chairmen in the state as Executive Secretaries in their former councils.

P.M.NEWS findings revealed that the governor is planning to appoint civil servants as Executive Secretaries of the 20 Local Governments and 37 Local Council Development Areas, LCDAs.

The ex-council chairmen have been agitating to be apponted Executive Secretaries in their various councils to act as temporal heads pending when election takes place in the 57 councils next year.

Our findings revealed that Fashola is irked that he was sidelined in the selection of those who are to take over as Executive Secretaries in all the councils.

At a meeting held while the governor travelled abroad, P.M.NEWS gathered that at least 24 former chairmen who had served one and two terms in office were selected to return as Executive Secretaries, with the governor not given any slot or consulted before they were picked.

The state government had earlier concluded plan to constitute a five-man committee to take over the administration of local governments in the state from the council managers next month. The council managers took over from the former council bosses whose tenure ended on Tuesday.

A top state official said the five-man committee would comprise an Executive Secretary, one Deputy Executive Secretary and three members, who he said, would run the affairs of the local council until election is conducted.

He explained that of the 57 council chairmen that vacated office on Tuesday, only 19 of them would come back as Executive Secretaries of their local governments, though subject to the ratification of the party leaders.

Our source added that the 19 council chairmen “will only return as executive secretaries because they just concluded their first term. On this note, they will be given concession to serve in the capacity of council executive secretaries. But their appointment would be contingent on their performance in office.

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“This means all council chairmen that already served two terms will not return either as executive secretaries or executive chairmen. But those who only served one term with sound records of performance will return as executive secretaries. Such people will also be allowed to seek re-election.

“The party leaders in the 19 local governments will vote on whether the affected council chairmen should be appointed. The criterion for their appointment is a function of their performance in office.”

But the name of five ex-chairmen who had served two terms were added to the 19 to bring the number to 24, contrary to the position that only those who had served single term in office would be considered.

This move, a top government source told PM.NEWS, did not go well with Fashola as he learnt of the arrangement when he came back from his trip.

And he was said to have vowed that none of those selected would return to office, adding that he would nominate civil servants to take charge of the various councils.

The governor, it was gathered, refused to append his signature to the list forwarded to him after he discovered that none of his candidate among those chosen.

He felt that as the governor of the state, his opinion should have been sought regarding the nomination of those who will head the councils.

The governor must append his signature before the list is forwarded to the State House of Assembly for approval.

The move to appoint civil servants as Executive Secretaries in all the councils, it was gathered, may pitch Fashola against leaders of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in the next few days unless amicable resolution is arrived at to nip the brewing crisis in the bud.

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