Why Ogunians deserve an apology from Gbenga Daniel – NAOSS

Former governor must make amends to natives, according to the National Association of State Students (NAOSS), before promoting local governments' financial independence.

The All Progressives Congress (APC)'s senatorial candidate in Ogun East, Daniel, has repeatedly called for the independence of the third branch of government.

He joined President Muhammadu in urging state governors to always disburse intended for local councils on Friday.

The National President of NAOSS, Gbemileke Ogunronbi, responded in a statement on Monday, saying the organization had read the former governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, response to the claims that state governors are deciding how much money is distributed to local governments from the federation account.

Daniel's support for the financial independence of local governments in Nigeria was applauded by the students, who also concurred that the state governor's misappropriation of the local government fund was largely to blame for the local government's lack of influence as the third tier of government at the local level.

However, NAOSS expressed shock that “it took Daniel eight years of his two terms as governor and 11 years after office before he could understand and appreciate the need for financial autonomy of local governments.

“This is stated because we are all familiar with how the ex-governor sat on funds belonging to local government and even went as far as sacking local government chairmen who challenged his illegal influence over this.”

Ogunrombi said it requires an effortless google search for anybody in the world to see “the overbearing power displayed by Otunba Gbenga Daniel as a governor over local government in Ogun State.”

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The student leader recalled “the manner in which he (Daniel) dismissed Tele Ogunjobi-led Ijebu North Local Government Council with a caretaker replacement on December 31st, 2008.

“The illegal action of the then governor was not overturned until December 2010 with a court order.”

He emphasised that “Daniel lacks the moral right to speak about the autonomy of local government in any form. If he must say something, it should come first with an apology to the people of Ogun State, whose administration had cost strategic development because of his dictatorship over the same local government.

“It is our hope that the current governors across the 36 states would learn from this and be worthy in their accountability before it is too late,” he concluded.

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