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Crisis rocks ACF

Posted by JOHN SHIKLAM, Kaduna on 2006/02/04 | Views: 483 |

Crisis rocks ACF

CHAIRMAN and Secretary General of Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF), Chief Sunday Awoniyi and Col. Hameed Ali (rtd) respectively have been accused of mismanaging about N100 million belonging to the organisation.

•Awoniyi, Ali linked to secret agenda

CHAIRMAN and Secretary General of Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF), Chief Sunday Awoniyi and Col. Hameed Ali (rtd) respectively have been accused of mismanaging about N100 million belonging to the organisation.

Publicity Secretary of the Forum, Mallam Aliyu Hayatu, who made the allegation in Kaduna said the money was donated to the organisation by some of the 19 Northern governors.

But in separate reactions yesterday both Awoniyi and Ali dismissed the accusation with the latter alleging that Hayatu was crying wolf because his monthly N50,000 honorarium had been stopped.

In the petition titled "ACF—Matters Arising", Hayatu alleged that there were plans by Awoniyi and Ali, a former military governor of Kaduna State to "hijack" the ACF for a personal "hidden agenda", and condemned the alleged deliberate steps they have taken to prevent elected members from carrying out their constitutional duties.

He lamented the inability of the various organs of the ACF to convene regular meetings, challenging the moral right of the organization to continue to engage President Olusegun Obasanjo’s government in its virulent criticism when the leadership of the forum has no regard for its constitution.

He stated that the leadership of the Forum under Chief Awoniyi has failed and is now a laughing stock in government circle.

The ACF spokesman further alleged that there is a clandestine, relentless and even ruthless drive to corner the ACF declaring that it is unconstitutional for anybody to do that

"That a plot is in place to corner ACF by seeing to it that its organs do not meet and that elected officials are denied the opportunity to perform their constitutionally assigned responsibilities is evidenced by the following two incidents.

"The first is a letter of complaints from the ACF treasurer to the effect that he had been kept totally in the dark on the control and management of the about N100 million belonging to ACF.

"It is not only that it is unconstitutional, illegal and reckless that someone other than the treasurer has been performing these functions, it may also be a powerful pointer to a hidden agenda. The second is my personal experience.

"With his election as chairman of a strengthened ACF National Executive Council, Chief Awoniyi had since been given that opportunity. The question now is whether two years into the three-year Awoniyi tenure, the ACF is any better.

"In an ACF environment where the organs almost never met, where the about one hundred million Naira ACF money is kept, spent and managed without the knowledge of the treasurer and others with the constitutional responsibilities for the items over which expenditure was incurred, isn’t it fair to state that ACF, today, is in greater mess than was the case previously?

"And for living within, (or even operating), an ACF whose constitution is so wantonly abused, isn’t it likely that President Obasanjo will laugh, scoff and even sneer at the Aliyu Hayatu, the Magaji Dambattas, the Admiral Nyakos and perhaps even the Sunday Awoniyis who are among the president’s strongest critcs for constitutional abuse and recklessness?,"Hayatu asked

Reacting to the allegation, Chief Awoniyi said "they are out on a mission of denegration. They have been commissioned to do so, but I’m not perturbed."

The ACF chief, who said that Hayatu has been peddling such allegations in the past, insisted that "having come this long, long way, to be accused of getting interested in mismanaging N100m is beneath contempt," sttressing that he has been putting his own money "the little 1 have, intothe running of the ACF."

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