Oshiomhole Again! Tears as he suspends local govt chair

Residents of Etsako West Local Government of Edo State were at the Government House in Benin, the state capital, to sing and dance yesterday.

It was at the swearing-in of Alasa Mohammed Idaro as the local government’s chairman.
They arrived at the venue of the event with drums, but they ended up shedding tears for and with the man they wanted to celebrate.
Governor Adams Oshiomhole suspended Alasa few minutes after his swearing-in.
The governor named Yesufu Busari Omomemi, who had been sworn in as the Vice Chairman, to become the local government’s Acting Chairman.

Alasa wept after his suspension. His supporters also joined him in weeping over his travail.
The former vice chairman was sworn in, following the death of former Chairman, Hassan Kadiri, last Friday after a prolonged illness.
Before Oshiomhole’s arrival, Alasa, who was dressed in a grey suit, sat under a tree, surrounded by friends and well-wishers.
He was memorizing a handwritten vote of thanks speech.

It was learnt that the former council vice chair was suspended because of his activities when Kadiri was ill.
Hassan died few hours after some youths protested at the local government’s secretariat, demanding his removal over prolonged ill-health and Alasa was fingered as the mastermind.

Oshiomhole said a panel of enquiry would be set up to investigate the allegations against Alasa.
The governor, who said he performed the swearing-in with mixed feelings, added that it was inhuman for anybody to organize a protest against somebody else on a sick bed.
He noted that what saddened him was the events and controversies that happened the day Hassan died.
Oshiomhole said the name of the suspended chairman had been mentioned by those arrested as being the financier of the protest.

He said: “Some disgruntled elements, whether they were masquerading as Students’ Union Government (SUG) officials or they were just touts and thugs, were hired by some persons to organize a protest that was almost turning violent, such that they had to bring in the police and even the army to restore peace in the local government.
“I am informed that the purpose of the protest was that Hassan, on his sick bed, should be relieved of his duties as Chairman so that the Vice Chairman could take over his job. I do not think human beings should play God.
“It is absolutely unacceptable that anyone would be so desperate to instigate another to protest against a man that was bedridden and admitted in the hospital, fighting for his life.

“Our jobs are worthless without life. All of us have our dates to depart this planet Earth. So, for anyone to organize a protest against someone who was bedridden, that he should be forced out of office so that another person would get promotion, is unethical and absolutely unacceptable.

“To publicly organize a protest against the sick, making unprintable statements, disturbing public peace and mobilizing people to do things that are capable of leading to riots with the possibility of even death, that, for me, is the height of irresponsibility. I do not think any civilized government will condone that.

“Therefore, in exercise of the powers vested in me as the Governor of Edo State under the Local Government Amended Acts, where there are weighty allegations against local government officers, I have the powers to carry out a thorough investigation on those allegations. This is because we know for a fact that to allege does not necessarily mean to prove. Allegations must be proven before any further actions…”

The Nation
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