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LAGCO Petitions Lagos Assembly Over Cabinet Nominee

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A Non-Governmental Organisation, Lagos Good Governance Coalition (LAGCO) has petitioned the Lagos State House of Assembly over a cabinet nominee, Dr. Olufemi Onanuga, sent to it for clearance by Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of the state.

In a letter titled; “Don’t Screen/Clear Indicted Corrupt Persons For Post Of Commissioner,” dated 15th October, 2015 and signed by its Co-ordinator and Secretary, Comrade M. M. Adebayo and Comrade T. Raheem respectively, and addressed to the Speaker of the House, the Group said that “it
behoves on the honourable House to exercise the highest level of
discretion, caution, and transparency in the process of screening and
approving those to become commissioners in the state under the current administration in order to avoid approving anyone of proven corruption
or indicted for corruption, fraud, and allied criminality.”

LAGCO emphasised that it has become public knowledge that at least one individual on the list of those being considered for the post of commissioners sent to
the House, referring to Dr. Olufemi Onanuga was indicted for fraud by an organization to which he once belonged, Ikoyi Club 1938, and that he was consequently expelled from the club, adding that someone, “who couldn’t be trusted to manage the affairs of a club with a relatively smaller financial base, how can he be entrusted with a state institution with far higher financial resources?”

“We need not remind you that a major mantra of your Party, the APC , is
the eradication of all forms corruption from government institutions
due to the humongous destructive impact it has wrought on the
socioeconomic fabrics of Nigeria at large,” it said.

The organisation maintained that it would be a major disservice to the current anti-corruption posture
of the APC government “for someone who had been indicted by the
disciplinary committee of a body to which he once belonged to be cleared to occupy a public office in Lagos State as a commissioner.

They pointed out in the petition that Mrs Onanuga, Dr. Onanuga’s
wife was recently appointed as the Director of the Lagos State Pension
Commission, and that the husband is now being considered for the post of
commissioner in the same government.

They said: “This smacks of deliberate act of nepotism and cronyism that must never be allowed in today’s Nigeria.

“Honourable Speaker sir, we urge you to prevail on the screening
committee of your honourable House to comprehensively investigate this
incident and if found true to ensure that Dr. Onanuga is not cleared
by the honourable House for the post of commissioner.

“Should the honourable House clear Dr. Onanuga after it has established
the veracity of this allegation, the APC government both at national
and state levels would be subjected to huge public opprobrium as a
promoter and not a fighter of corruption and the claims of the
opposition PDP in its criticism of the list of people sent to your honourable House would have been confirmed.

“We trust that you would do justice to this petition and act in the
best interests of the state.”

LAGCO is a coalition of several civil society organizations with the
primary objectives of ensuring that the government is accountable to
the people, fights against rights violations and corruption in public
and private institutions.

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