Lagos State chapter of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has charged the State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC) to announce the date and guidelines for the conduct of election into all the 20LGs and 37LCDAs within 14 days, otherwise it would call for sack of members the electoral body led by Justice Ayotunde Philips (rtd).
The party gave the charge on Sunday in a statement made available to the Nigerian Tribune by its publicity secretary, Mr. Taofik Gani, saying this call was on the heels of the recent decision of the Supreme Court judgment which had again further reiterated the illegality and unconstitutionality of unelected persons to govern local government areas in the country.
It would be recalled that the Speaker, House of Representatives, Hon. Yakubu Dogara, said few days ago that the National Assembly would not relent in its effort to grant financial autonomy to the 774 local government councils in the country, noting that lack of elections had been crippling democracy and denying the much needed development at the third tier of government.
According to the PDP, which said it would “sponsor the sack of the present LASIEC board particularly to prevent provoked disobedience to the councils’ bye laws and authorities,” the tenure of the last democratically elected local government councils had since lapsed in 2014, but former Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola refused to hold elections and instead constituted illegal council governments.
“This call is on the heels of the recent decision of the Supreme Court judgment which has again further reiterated the illegality and unconstitutionality of unelected persons to govern local government areas.
“The Supreme Court led by Justice Rhodes-Vivour reaffirmed the need for local governments to be run by only democratically elected persons as chairmen. Justice Vivour is a lagos state slot at the supreme Court.
“Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo of Lagos High Court had sometimes in 2006 declared such caretaker committees in Lagos councils as illegal. By all these plethora of judgments and the composition of LASIEC, this unending delay can no longer be justified,” the party said.
It challenged the LASIEC to purge itself of the accusations that it was incompetent and partisan, thereby lacking the confidence to conduct credible local government polls occasioning the unending delay to hold the exercise.
“We specifically challenge the LASIEC headed by Justice Phillips (rtd) to purge itself of the accusations that it is incompetent and partisan, thereby lacking the confidence to conduct credible local government polls hence the unending delay to conduct the polls,” the PDP said.
The party maintained that it was very expedient for the third tier of government to have democratically elected persons to carry out the developments contemplated in the constitution as well as compliment the state and Federal governments.