Suspension Call: Anxiety across 16 LGs in Kwara  


Govt keeps mum on fate of DPMs, treasurers

By Mumini AbdulKareem

Palpable fear and uncertainty enveloped the premises of the 16 local government areas in Kwara State on Wednesday as Directors of Personnel Management (DPMs) and treasurers in the councils were yet to receive any official communication from the state government regarding their plight, National Pilot, can authoritatively report.
Checks by this reporter at some of the councils on Wednesday revealed that some of the affected officials were seen at their offices amidst unconfirmed speculation that the government is on the verge of delegating some government staff to take over their duties.
The development is coming just as a seasoned local government administrator, Alhaji Ayinla Alarape, on Wednesday cautioned Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq against the disbandment of the DPMs and treasurers.
Meanwhile, the Governor was yet to make any official statement regarding the issue, 48 hours after the state House of Assembly made the call.
The Governor’s Chief Press Secretary (CPS) Rafiu Ajakaye did not answer calls to get the official position of his principal regarding the issue. Response to a WhatsApp message sent to him Wednesday morning was still being expected last night before this paper went to bed although it indicated it had been read.
Many had expected the Governor to treat the call to suspend the councils DPMs and treasurers by the Kwara State House of Assembly with dispatch just as he did during the suspension saga of the local government chairmen.
Several DPMs who were contacted last night to also speak on the issue declined comment but confided in our reporter that they are still studying the situation.
The lawmakers on Tuesday urged Governor Abdulrazaq to suspend all the 16 DPMs and treasurers to enable the House carry out thorough investigation into allegation of misappropriation among others.
The resolution of the House followed the presentation of the report of the joint committee on Local Government, Chieftaincy Affairs and Ethics, Privileges and Judiciary by its Chairman, Hon Abdul Gafar Ayinla at the floor of the House.
The Speaker, Hon Yakubu Danladi while reading the resolutions of the House equally directed the Joint Committee to proceed on oversight to all the 16 local government councils to verify the claims made by the suspended council chairmen.
The House, according to the Speaker, equally mandated its Joint Committee to invite all stakeholders to ensure thorough investigation into the allegation.
The Joint committee, according to its Chairman, Ayinla had while briefing the House called for the suspension of the affected staff, pointing out that it had obtained documents and with the intention to move to the next stage of investigation. He then requested more time to complete its report.
Most members who spoke on the issue explained that since local government councils operate on tripod of chairmen, DPMs and treasurers, it would be unfair to exonerate the affected staff of the councils from suspension, to ensure holistic investigation on the subject matter.
In a similar vein, the Kwara State House of Assembly has also urged Governor, Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq to suspend the Governing Council of the Kwara State University (KWASU), Malete and constitute visitation panel to investigate non adherence to due process on the process of appointment of a new Vice Chancellor for the institution.
This was the resolution of the House following a petition presented by member representing Afon constituency, Hon Abdulwahab Opakunle titled; “Unpalatable Activities in KWASU” written by Usman Adamu Bayero, Issa Sanusi and Adamu Liman Abubakar.
Reading the House resolution, the Speaker, Hon Danladi said the suspension of the institution’s Governing Council by the Governor became imperative to ensure equity, fairness and restore sanity in the process that will lead to the appointment of new Vice Chancellor.
Most of the members who spoke on the petition accused the Governing Council of flagrant disobedience to the laws establishing the institution and urged the House to urgently intervene with a view to restoring sanity in the process.

…expert cautions Gov AbdulRasaq Assembly resolution

By Mumini AbdulKareem

Alhaji Ayinla Alarape, an expert in local government administration, yesterday, cautioned Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq of Kwara State against disbanding the Directors of Personnel Management (DPMs) and treasurers of the 16 councils to allow continuity in local government administration in the state.
He made the plea while reaching to the state House of Assembly request to the state Governor to suspend all the DPMs and treasurers in the local government councils across the state.
The lawmakers during Tuesday’s plenary had urged the Governor to suspend the affected officials to allow the House investigate alleged misappropriation of fund.
Alarape, in his reaction to the issue last night in a telephone chat, advised the state government to allow the current DPMs and treasurers to remain in office for reliable and acceptable outcome of the investigation of alleged misappropriation of fund.
He said, “The DPMs and treasurers should be allowed to stay in office during the investigation to unravel several hidden agenda of the councils’ administration.”
According to him, the officials in question are civil servants who had served the state diligently, adding that some of them are even due for retirement in few weeks.
The Kwara State Local Government Service Commission is yet to receive any directive from the state government after the call of the Kwara State House of Assembly to suspend the DPMs and treasurers.

…we’re still consulting on recommendation – NULGE

By Matthew Denis

The Kwara State chapter of Nigeria Union of Local Government Employers (NULGE) has disclosed that the union is still making consultations on the recommendation by the state House of Assembly that the 16 councils Directors of Personal Management (DPMs) and treasurers be suspended.
Recall that the state House of Assembly on Tuesday called on Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq to suspend the affected council officials throughout the state.
But speaking during a telephone chat with our reporter last night, the Kwara State NULGE President, Alhaji Yusuf Ayinla Salihu said that union was yet to take any position on the matter.
According to him, NULGE will engage members of the Kwara State House of Assembly on the issue on today (Thursday) in order to have a full grasp of the situation.
“We will have to engage the lawmakers on this issue and we have concluded to meet on Thursday.
“From there, we can be able to have a better understanding of the resolution of the House before we can know the next step to take.
“But for now, we are still consulting the various stakeholders on the issue to take informed decision and position”, he noted.
Salihu however charged workers at the council to remain committed to their duties.

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