Chairman of the Lagos State House of Assembly Committee on Local Government and Community Affairs, Hon. Abdulsobur Olawale Olayiwola has reiterated the importance of prompt payment of severance to political office holders by council Chairmen.
The lawmaker who led the committee in continuation of their oversight function across the 57 Local Governments and Local Council Development Areas in the state, made the assertion citing the need for proper arrangements for payments of the severance packages to the concerned individuals.
The team, which visited Ikosi Ejirin LCDA, Eredo LCDA and Epe Local Government areas were of the view that given the short time span before the expiration of the tenure of the council chairmen, prompt provisions needed be made to pay the severance of the politicians so to prevent passing of liabilities to the next administration.
Sobur maintained that,”before now, we had given a directive that there should have a sinking fund, where they will be keeping monies for the rainy days so that at the end of the tenure the money will be used to pay the severance of the politicians in the councils.
“The essence of severance package is that all the political office holders will have their monies before the end of their tenure, but reverse seems to be the case.
In Ikosi Ejirin LCDA under the leadership of Hon. Onanuga Shamsideen, the lawmakers commended his administration for putting in place a befitting legislative chamber for the councillors, but reprimanded him for being the Chairman of the tender board the council, a development they said wascontrary to laid down procedures.
Onanuga however, promised the lawmakers that he would revert to the status quo on the issue.
“This visit will have a very good impact because if this had been happening before now many of the chairmen and the councillors will know what to do in their local governments.
“This shows us that when we are elected as chairmen of the councils we really have to take care of the demands of the people.”
In Eredo LCDA, the Council Chairman, Hon. Adeniyi Saliu commended the team, saying that he would make amends on the aspects cited by the lawmakers on oversight visit.
“The team has done a very good job, they are thorough, they are very detailed, they paid attention and they were very objective about the things they saw on ground and in their assessment.
“They felt very happy on the areas we have done well and they commended us in areas they asked us to look at. For me, it is an appraisal and I take it very seriously.
“We will not take it for granted and we are going to see it as a call to duty and we are going to do a lot more in ensuring the delivery of the dividends of democracy to the people of Eredo LCDA,” he said.
Hon. Adedoyin Adesanya, the Chairman of Epe Local Government was commended by the visiting legislators for doing due diligence in the awarding and execution of contracts as minimal direct labour involvement was observed, which they said was a sign of a thorough administration.
He was also lauded for making provision for a conducive legislative chamber and offices for the councillors.
Adedoyin, who appreciated the efforts of the team, said that he was overwhelmed with joy for the visit.
“This is an appraisal of what we are doing, we will know our lapses and how to correct them.
“Here in Epe, we don’t have IGR, our allocation is so small and what we expend the monies on are just too much.
“We listen to the public at our quarterly stakeholders meeting to give their demands priority,” he said.
Hon. Rasheed Makinde, a member of the committee, while speaking with newsmen noted that the severance packages of the politicians must be paid.
“What we saw here in Epe Local Government is far better, most of their projects are contracted out and they have impacted on their localities.
“The issue of severance package supposed to be part of the things they should have taken care of since the inception of their administration. But as it is, they just have to look for money for the payment of the severance to all the political office holders so that it won’t be a liability to the coming administration.
Other lawmakers on the tour were Hon. Rauf Age-Sulaimon (Amuwo Odofin 2), Hon. Nurein Akinsanya (Mushin 1) and Hon. Kehinde Joseph (Alimosho 2).