$1bn insurgency fund: Stop Federal govt now, Ekiti LG Bosses tell Court

By Editor on 20/12/2017

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Chairpersons of the 16 local government areas in Ekiti State have dragged the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and governors of the 36 states to court over the decision to withdraw $1 billion from the Excess Crude Account to fight insurgency.

The suit seems to be in fulfillment of assertions by the Governor of Ekiti State that he will drag his colleagues in the Nigeria Governors Forum to court over the permission they gave to the Federal Government last week to withdraw funds from the ECA which is jointly owned by the Federal Government to fight Boko Haram.

The suit, which was supported by a 14-paragraph affidavit, was filed on Tuesday at Federal High Court sitting in Abuja.

In the suit, the Council chiefs are seeking an order of injunction restraining the federal government and the 36 states governors, their agents, servants, privies, representatives in interest, howsoever called and by whatsoever name designated, from giving effect to the appropriation and/or approval of appropriation of the sum of $1 billion or any other sum whatsoever, from the Excess Crude Account of the Federation, as contained in the decision made on December 15, 2017, unless and by means of statutory allocation by the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC).

They also asked the court the court to declare that the approval of the sum of $1 billion by the 36 state governors to purportedly execute the constitutional duty of the federal government, which has been sufficiently funded from the Federation Account, without their consent was ultra vires, unlawful, null and void.

RMAFC was also listed as a defendant in the suit, THISDAY newspaper reports.

The chairmen include Deji Ogunsakin (Ado LGA); Bola Alonge (Ikere LGA); Lanrewaju Omolase (Ekiti South West LGA); Dapo Olagunju (Irepodun/Ifeelodun LGA); Samuel Adeniyi (Ekiti East LGA); Olumide Falade (Ise/Orun LGA); Sade Akinrinmola (Gbonyin LGA); Tayo Ogundare (Oye LGA); Chief Ayodeji Arogbodo (Ido/Osi LGA) and Taiwo Oguntuase (Emure LGA).

The others include Kolawole Omotunde (Ekiti West LGA); Bolaji Jeje (Efon LGA); Adesola Adeyanju (Ikole LGA); Ganiyu Bakare (Ilejemele LGA); Adeniyi Adebayo (Moba LGA) and Abiodun Dada (Ijero LGA).

Also, the local government chairmen are seeking for an order of court declaring that in the discharge of its constitutional duty to safeguard the security and territorial integrity of Nigeria, the Federal Government of Nigeria, being the 1st defendant’s principal (AGF), must be funded in accordance with its Appropriation Act and by means of due accruals from the Federation Account only.

They also want the court to declare that the 1st-37 defendants’ appropriation and/or approval of appropriation of the sum of $1 billion from the Excess Crude Account of the federation made at the National Economic Council meeting of December 12, 2017, without regard to the consent of the 38th defendant (the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission), the plaintiffs (integral part of the Local Governments of the Federation of Nigeria), and the due appropriation of the various state Houses of Assembly, was unconstitutional, unlawful, ultra vires, null and void ab initio and of no effect whatsoever.

In addition they also asked the court for a declaration that they are entitled to a full share of all revenue accrued and accruable to the Federation Account and the Federation Excess Crude Account or any other account whatsoever operated by and for the Federation of Nigeria, including the sum of $1 billion (which was purportedly approved for the expenditure of the federal government by the 1st-37th defendants at the 83rd National Economic Council meeting of December 15, 2017, in accordance with Section 162 of the 1999 Constitution and the provisions of Allocation of Revenue (Federation Account) Act.

They want the court to determine “whether by the provisions of Sections 153 (1) (h), 162 and Paragraph 18, Part 1 of the Third Schedule of the 1999 Constitution, the 1st -37th defendants can lawfully appropriate and or approve the appropriation of funds in the Excess Crude Account of the Federation of Nigeria, without affecting, reducing or obliterating the plaintiffs’ lawful share of proceeds from the Federation Account”.

They also want the court to decide “Whether the 2nd defendant can lawfully appropriate and/or approve the appropriation of funds in the Excess Crude Account of the Federation of Nigeria, without the consent and/or consultation of the plaintiffs.

“Whether in the discharge of the federal government’s constitutional duty of safeguarding the security and territorial integrity of Nigeria, (as mandated by Section 217 of the 1999 Constitution, the federal government can lawfully resort to funding other than by means of its Appropriation Act.”

No date has been fixed for the hearing of the suit.

 

 

Source This Day

Posted on December, 20 2017

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