Thursday, June 1, 2017 10:52 pm
The poor relationship between Senator Dino Melaiye (Kogi West) and Kogi State Governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello reached a new low on Thursday. The Senator dragged Governor Bello, before a Federal High Court, sitting in Lokoja over non conduct of local government elections.
The lawmaker in the suit wants the court to declare the constitution of caretaker committees for the 21 local government areas of the state illegal, null and void.
Apart from Bello, the suit also has as defendants the Kogi state House of Assembly, Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, the Kogi State Local Government Service Commission and the state Independent Electoral Commission.
Others joined in the suit are the Joint Local Government Accounts Allocation Committee, the 21 local government areas of the state, the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Minister of Finance, the Federation Accounts and Allocation Committee and the Inspector General of Police.
The suit supported by a 30-paragraph affidavit deposed to by Melaye, sought 13 reliefs which include a declaration that the governor in pursuance of Section 56(1-6) Kogi state local government law 2008 could not appoint local government transition committees, sole administrators for the local government areas.
He also prayed the court to declare that the governor inline with the section 1(3) and Section 7(1) of the constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria “cannot exercise its power in such a manner as to have delayed, refused or neglected to conduct local government elections for the purposes of constituting the various local government councils”.
The suit also prayed the court for a declaration that “upon the interpretation of Section 7 of the Allocation of Revenue (Federation Account) Act Cap A15, LFN2004 there cannot exist a validly and lawfully constituted Joint Local Government Account Allocation Committee for the purpose of administering all sums of money accruing to the local government areas”.
Having prayed for the declaration of the Joint Local Government Account Allocation Committee illegal, the suit also claimed that releasing money for the committee is illegal and should be declared unlawful and unconstitutional.
The lawmaker also wants the court to make a declaration restraining the governor, the House of Assembly among others from constituting or appointing any person as caretaker committee or sole administrator.
The suit also asks for injunction directing the governor and other defendants from appropriating, expending or dealing with revenues accruing to the local government areas.