Q: Can we meet you?
A: I am a Legal Practitioner, an ex-legislator, who served and represented Ikorodu Constituency I in 2003-2007 under Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu administration. I was appointed in 2012 to serve as Commissioner 1 at the Lagos State House of Assembly Service Commission for a five year tenure; I disengaged in December 2017.
Q: What clarification can you make concerning the Lagos State House of Assembly Commission?
A: The law is cited in the Lagos State House of Assembly Service Commission law in 2010. When you look at the provision, section 2 says composition of the Commission shall comprise the Chairman and four other members who shall be presented to the Governor, who is a person of unquestionable integrity.
Each of the members shall represent each of the five divisions in the State; that is what we call ‘IBILE’ (Ikorodu, Badgray, Ikeja, Lagos, Epe).
Section 2 Sub Section 3, says the Speaker of the House, upon all consultations with the Principal Officers of the House, prepares and sends to the Governor, a proposed list of five qualified person of which the Governor shall appoint the chairman and members of the commission among them. When you go to the interpretations, the Principal Officers are the Speaker, the Deputy Speaker, Majority leader, Deputy Majority Leader, Chief Whip, Deputy Chief Whip. Those are the Principal Officers empowered by this law.
As at November 2017, the Commission paid a condolence visit to our Leader /Asiwaju Bola Tinubu over the demise of his son in his United Kingdom residence. We seized the opportunity to discuss with him. Fortunately, the Speaker was in the U.K and Asiwaju promised that he would discuss with him which he did. I even visited him personally to tell him that I’m still interesting to serve, although it’s not automatic.
There have been misinformation, insinuation, lies but I think for clarity, I should just clear the air on how it all went. It is not all about me as a person; I have done my bit I have represented for five years but it is very unfortunate that when the current Commission members were inaugurated in May 2018, there was no nominee from Ikorodu among them. Four came back apart from me without anyone replacing me from Ikorodu.
Q: Has that space not been filled up till now?
A: They have someone else from Agege filling the quota of Ikorodu, which is where the Speaker is from. The conspiracy, which is very obvious, is that the Majority Leader is from this division; where was he as at the time the list was prepared?
The Majority Leader, statutorily is the chairman house committee on business rules. Where was he when the list was compiled and sent to the Governor, to the assembly and the nominees were read out on the floor of the House? he was present there; he was not out of the country. There was no objection. It goes beyond constituency thing, or senatorial because the law says division. So, now, we are talking of constituency 1 and 2. If the other one from constituency 2 is a docile Lawmaker, what stopped the Majority Leader, who has spent almost twelve years, from knowing what was going on there, but they all kept silent.
Q: Have you spoken to the Majority Leader about this issue?
A: We spoke on phone; he was the one that called me but the damage had already been done by them when he called me; the conspiracy has been executed. Unfortunately, the division has been deprived of representation at the Commission for the next five years and it is very painful. I am not saying it should be me; I’ve done my bit for five years. Someone else could have been appointed. I challenge the Majority Leader through this platform; I challenge the other man representing Constituency II to defend themselves. The people of Imota, Igbogbo, Ibeshe, Ijede, Ikorodu West, North, Central, thousands of people, who voted them in, are being betrayed. Both of them kept quiet while the nominees were screened at the House of Assemble in May 2018.
Q: Can you tell us some of the lies?
A: Part of the lies is that they could not tell the truth. There are no platforms, where the two Lawmakers could educate the constituents. They would be distributing items, exploring the poverty stricken constituents but there is no feedback platforms, where they could be questioned. They have the mandate of the constituents and they should be held answerable to the people.
Q: Is IBILE Forum as an umbrella group, still existing? If yes, are they intervening in this matter?
A: To the best of my knowledge, they are still existing, but ever since the issue of this senatorial district came up, the rest is history. I wonder how five could be divided by three. It can never be beatable. At the party level, I was able to inform the apex body of the party, being headed by the former Deputy Governor, Prince Biodun Ogunleye, Chief Bashorun, Princess Denrele Ogunsanya, Asipa Kaoli Olusanya, past office holders and opinion leaders. At the party level, we set up a committee headed by Alhaji Musiliu Animashaun (De Cubano); Tijani Olasunkanmi was also a member of the committee; Alhaji Gafar was also a member too as well as B. O. Enifeni and Alhaji Waheed Owokodu to actually consult with the Speaker on what happened regarding the nomination.
Q: If you have access to Asiwaju and other pressure groups, don’t you have access to the Governor on this kind of Issue?
A: Like I said, on my own part, I met Asiwaju in his study room immediately the nominees were sent to the Assembly. The former Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Mr. Ademorin Kuye from Shomolu, was with us in the study while Asiwaju called the Speaker on phone to hear his own side. He was the one that said it was the senatorial district that were used in picking the member of the commission. Asiwaju promised to take the issue to the Governor and said I should not worry but only need to inform the constituents about the development so far because not many of them were aware as some of them were being misinformed.
Q: Can you tell us the implication of Ikorodu not having a representative on the Commission in the next five years?
A: Just like the Civil Service Commission, if they want to employ, the Governor issues what we can mandate to recruit; same thing applies to this Commission. If the issue of employment, discipline of Commission come up, who would constituents of Ikorodu division run to? They have been deprived of adequate representation for the next five years and that is a damage.
Q: What are you doing to call Ikorodu division to order on this matter?
A: Why I am here is about the post I just left. It is about the conspiracy by the two Lawmakers representing us. I want the illiterates, who are not informed, to know that there must be a nominee from every division and not from Senatorial district. The party district leaders have done their bit. On my own part, I am just to clear the air. I can still serve the division in any other capacity but for people to be informed, I am challenging the two lawmakers to come and defend what transpired, especially the Principal Officer among them empowered by this party; was he asleep when the list was been compiled or what went wrong? So I am telling you that the constituents should beware of their mandate.
The conspiracy is not against me as an individual; I have served in various capacities. The conspiracy is against the mandate of the people of the division.
Q: What is your message to the people of Ikorodu concerning this issue?
A: There have been reactions, but I am not a party to lawsuit. Most people have feigned pretence over this issues. Posterity will judge us; even the traditional institution feigned pretence. If the Majority Leader and the Speaker, who are both chieftaincy title leaders in Ikorodu, feel innocent over this issues, I await their reactions.
Q: Are there any other area you feel Ikorodu has been marginalized?
A: We have a Commissioner; we have a Lawmaker representing us but let me remind you that similar incident occurred while I was in the Assembly and it was a front page piece of news in this same Oriwu Sun. It was a cover page story, the Local Government Service Commission nominated themselves and nobody came from Ikorodu and I stood my ground to express my disappointment. When Kaoli was appointed Commissioner in 2003, he was the only nominee from Ikorodu, no other person.
Q: 2019 is around the corner. Talking about issues of marginalization and other issues springing up in Ikorodu politics, how would they affect the fortune of Ikorodu in the coming elections and what are the steps taken regarding those issues?