The Democracy Vanguard, DV, has warned Islamil Omipidan, Chief Press Secretary to Governor Gboyega Oyetola to stop justifying formation of caretakers for local governments in Osun as legal.
The group made this known on Monday in a press statement signed by its state coordinator, Comrade Olowu Emmanuel.
Responding to Oyetola’s aide that his principal did not flout the law on formation of caretakers against elected chairmen and councillors, Emmanuel said Omipidan’s claim was a deliberate misinterpretation of Nigeria’s 1999 constitution.
The press statement reads in part “It becomes very necessary that we correct and caution some officials of Osun State Government particularly, the Chief Press Secretary, CPS, to the Governor, Ismail Omipidan, on his deliberate misinformation over the unlawful setting up of the Local Government Caretaker Committee by Gov Isiaka Oyetola through the instrumentality of the Osun State House of Assembly.
“No matter the purpose their misinterpretation of the constitution is to serve, setting up of caretaker committee remains an aberration to the Nigerian Constitution. It is illegal, unconstitutional and to the extent of its inconsistency with the Nigerian constitution, it remains null and void.
“The Supreme Court has made several judicial pronouncements on the illegality of any governor or, and the state assembly to set up unelected, undemocratic, caretaker committee, a contraption unknown to the 1999 Constitution (as amended) The Supreme Court re-emphasised its position on the illegality of caretaker committee in its recent judgement against Oyo State Governor and the State House of Assembly in the case filed by ALGON Oyo State.
“This deliberate and persistent misinterpretation of the constitution was repeated by the CPS during the Monthly Edition of Media Parley Organized by the members of Osun Online Media Practitioners Association where he claimed that Osun State Government never flouted the laws guiding Administration of Local Government by appointing Caretaker Committees and he further misinformed that anything that was covered by the law (OSHA law) cannot be regarded as an aberration.
“It is elementary knowledge of law that the Nigerian Constitution supercedes any state or local government law, and it takes superiority over any other law that is inconsistent with it.
Supremacy of the Nigeria constitution is never and cannot be in doubt.
“(Supremacy of the Nigerian constitution)
Chapter 1 of the 1999 constitution (as amended)
1. (1) This Constitution is supreme and its provisions shall have binding force on the authorities and persons throughout the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“SECTION 4 (Subsection 5) If any laws are not in agreement with the Law of the National Assembly they shall be void (5) If any law enacted by the House of Assembly of a state is inconsistent with any law validly made by the National Assembly, the law made by the National Assembly shall prevail, and that other law shall, to the extent of the consistency, be void
“Chapter 7 (1) Local Government Election (The position of the Nigeria Constitution of Local government election)
“7. (1) The system of local government by democratically elected local government councils is under this Constitution guaranteed; and accordingly, the Government of every State shall, subject to section 8 of this Constitution, ensure their existence under a Law which provides for the establishment, structure, composition, finance, and functions of such councils.
“We reassert our position that the setting up of undemocratic caretaker committees to run the affair local government in Osun state is illegal, undemocratic and unconstitutional.
“Democracy Vanguard shall continue to agitate for the conduct of a free, fair and credible local government election through all available measures permitted by the law.”
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