Wednesday, 13 January 2010

News Reiease: Lagos State Assembly’s Relationship With Executive: DPA Warns, Sets Agenda For 2010

                                             [Lagos State Governor]

The Democratic Peoples’ Alliance (DPA) has said if the Lagos State House of Assembly wants its warning to Governor Raji Fashola to be taken seriously, the Legislature must show a renewed zeal to moderate the excesses of the state government this New Year.

DPA, reacting to Hon. Speaker Adeyemi Kuforiji’s recent warning that the government should beware of praise singers and sycophants, described it as “an unusual firmness” that might signify the Legislature’s determination to start taking its oversight functions seriously in 2010.

In the words of DPA: “The House should be worried that things have gone so bad now that when supporters of the ruling Action Congress (AC) shout their party’s slogan, ‘Eko o ni baje, ( Lagos will not rot away)’ Lagosians will quickly retort ‘ju bayi lo (worse than this).’ And the main reason is because three years into its term, the House has watched silently as the Executive ran the state with unwholesome impunity.”

A DPA statement by its Director of Publicity, Felix Oboagwina, urged the legislators to emphasise their checks and balance role.

According to the party, issues urgently needing the House’s attention included: Inhuman demolition of business and residential facilities by the state government without provision of alternatives and compensations; illegal arrests and detentions and other human rights violations by LASTMA, KAI and other paramilitary arms of the Executive; and reviewing the expensive aspects of the Coroner Law to make it less burdensome for the bereaved.

Other matters the party counseled the House to urgently wade into include: The inappropriateness of the Alpha-Beta consultancy; the poisoning of the Igando General Hospital and environs by a solid waste dump-site; double taxation; need for publishing the cost of contracts; reviewing the sale to private investors of public mortuaries and other state facilities like the School of Nursing; highlighting the state of dilapidated roads; and overcrowding in public school classrooms.

DPA said Lagosians would welcome the House’s apparent revival from its slumber, especially if it quickly dropped its toga of complicity with the Executive’s impunity and apathy to citizens’ rights.

As far as the party was concerned, “In the last 10 years, Lagosians have had less than acceptable government because the AC-dominated House chose to hear no evil and speak no evil about the AC-dominated Executive. If the Speaker can speak out the way he has done, then we have a born-again LSHA and Lagosians can expect a better deal.”

The party said this was a campaign year and the House must make every sitting, every motion, every voice and every second to count.

According to the party, although the current regime under Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola could not be said to have scored zero in performance, his regime’s disposition had proved right the maxim that “power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

Felix Oboagwina
Director of Publicity(Lagos State DPA)