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Ajimobi, Commissioners ‘Stole’ Many Oyo Govt Vehicles, LG Chairmen Went Away With Fridges And TVs – Makinde’s Aide, Ilaka Raises Alarm

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Chief Bisi Ilaka, the Chief of Staff to Oyo State Governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde, Saturday alleged that the immediate past governor of the state, Mr. Abiola Ajimobi, his commissioners and other top government functionaries went away with many government vehicles, especially new ones bought at the end of 2018 and early this year.

Ilaka made this revelation while speaking with journalists in Ibadan, the state capital.

He explained that Makinde, his deputy and himself have been riding in their personal vehicles since assumption of office because there are no vehicles to work with.

Ilaka, who was asked to confirm report of 11 missing government vehicles, said the actual number of vehicles Ajimobi and his aides went away with, would be ascertained at the conclusion of forensic verification of government assets.

Ilaka said, “We have only been in government for barely a week and a half. But from what we have seen so far, the scale of larceny by the last government is unprecedented. Everybody knows that getting cars is not the problem of the immediate past governor. Why did he take away government vehicles?

“If Ajimobi goes to a car showroom and asks to be supplied 11 cars, they will deliver the cars to him because they know they will get paid. We will take the steps we deem necessary on this.

“It is not limited to him. His commissioners have gone away with vehicles same as the heads of parastatals. There are no vehicles there and a lot of these cars were bought by the end of 2018 and early this year. Some were boarded for pittance.

“When we came in, we felt that most of us who share the political space in Oyo State are one way or the other brothers. So, we don’t want to go out as if we are witch-hunting anybody. But they are forcing our hand.

“We have a responsibility to the people of the state. We need to protect the resources of the state. If we to replace these vehicles, it will at a cost to the state. Why did they do this?

“Even the local government chairmen went away with fridges and TVs. I can’t understand their mindset. They say a fish rots from the head. If the governors had done this, what did we expect the commissioners, chairmen and heads of parastatals would do?

“We are peeling the onion layer by layer and within the next week or two, we will strive to retrieve a lot of these government properties that they have stolen. There is no other word for it. It is theft. And that is the kind of rape inflicted on the state in the last eight years. It is gratuitous.”

Ilaka added that some officials in the state Ministry of Justice had told him that only five or six out of the 12 SUVs the past government said it bought for the judiciary were supplied.

He disclosed that the Director of Public Prosecution in the state would be empowered “to chase these people down any foxhole they might get into,” stressing that never again would the state be subjected to this kind of stealing it witnessed in the last eight years.

He assured the people of the state that Makinde would protect their commonwealth and utilize the same for their welfare as well as the development of the state.

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BREAKING: Buhari Fails To Renew Fowler’s Tenure, Names Muhammad Nami As New FIRS Boss

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President Muhammadu Buhari has appointed Muhammad Nami to replace Babatunde Fowler as chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).

Fowler’s tenure expired on Monday.

More to follow…

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Orji Kalu Will Receive Full Salaries, Allowances In Prison — Senate

Peter Okunoren

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The convicted Chief Whip of the Senate, Orji Kalu, will continue to receive his salaries and all other entitlements while in prison, the Senate has said.

This is despite that he will not be performing any legislative function from prison.

The spokesperson of the Senate, Godiya Akwashiki, disclosed this to PREMIUM TIMES on Sunday.

He said despite the conviction, Mr Kalu remains a sitting senator and will be paid all of his entitlements in full.

He said until the case gets to Supreme Court and a final judgement is given, Mr Kalu remains a serving lawmaker.

“He is still a senator. This is the first court. The matter is going to Supreme Court so, he still has the opportunity to appeal up to the Supreme Court level.

“Of course they will pay him. Because he is a sitting senator just like I said…if you file for an appeal, you are still serving and so they will pay you.

“All his entitlements will be paid. There is no cause for alarm. In fact, even if the Court of Appeal says they have upheld the judgement of the lower court, he still has the right to go to Supreme Court. So once the Supreme Court says, yes, the judgement is okay, then that’s the final,” he explained.

Earlier, Mr Akwashiki said Mr Kalu’s seat will not be declared vacant.

He explained that no provision in the constitution that says the seat of any senator facing prosecution or convicted at a lower court should be declared vacant.

Mr Kalu’s seat will not be declared vacant except he (Mr Kalu) has explored all the legal options available to him without success, he said.

“Even the tenure of a former governor Joshua Dariye, who has been in prison for some time now, ran its course until the end of the 8th National Assembly. Nobody declared his seat vacant.”

The Federal High Court in Lagos on Thursday sentenced Mr Kalu to 12 years in prison after convicting him of N7.65 billion fraud.

Mr Kalu, a former governor of Abia State, was pronounced guilty of the charge in a trial that lasted for 12 years.

The conviction comes 12 years after the ex-governor was first arrested by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in 2007 and was tried alongside his company, Slok Nigeria Limited, and Udeh Udeogu, who was Director of Finance and Accounts at the Abia State Government House during Mr Kalu’s tenure as governor.

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BREAKING: Assassins Attacks MD Of Maersk Line, Wife Forced To Drink Acid

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Palpable tension has enveloped Maersk, one of the biggest organizations in the Nigerian maritime industry.

According to reports, the Managing Director of Maersk Line, Gildas Tohouo Tohouo, and his family were said to have been attacked at their Lugard Road, Ikoyi home last night.

The attacked happened while he, his three children and his wife were at home.

While reports are saying that the man himself was severely stabbed and battling for his life, the wife is said to have given up the ghost as she was forced to drink acid by their assailants.

Several angles are being linked to the unfortunate incident. While some are saying the attack must have been as a result of a generator contract gone wrong between Maersk and some other unnamed companies, some are saying the attack was as a result of domestic electrician that was sacked.

Those in the know are claiming that Maersk as an organization is not new to attacks as such that results in the loss of lives. A source who craved anonymity claims that the company once sent two Dutch auditors to look into its books and both men were shot dead by assassins in a full office.

The attack on the managing director and his family is being suspected to be an insider job by some other people because the security around where he lives is premium and he lives close to former interim head of state, Chief Ernest Shonekan, whose place also enjoys excellent security because of his status as a former head of state.

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