<!– Lagos Speaker Obasa faces probe panel –>
Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa, has been absolved of all allegations of corruption leveled against him by SaharaReporters.
He was declared not guilty and a vote of confidence was passed on him following the report submitted by the nine-man fact-finding ad-hoc committee set up by the Lagos State House of Assembly.
Some of the allegations leveled against Obasa include operating 64 bank accounts with different names and dates of birth, approval of N258 million to print invitation cards for the inauguration of Ninth Assembly, collection of N80 million as estacode for a Dubai trip, his wife collecting N10 million from the House every month, and the purchase of 11 Hiace buses for the House as well as 80 cars for the lawmakers within one year without due process.
However, the report of the investigative committee headed by Victor Akande (Ojo Constituency 1) said the allegations against the speaker were frivolous, unfounded and could not be substantiated by the accusers who refused to honor the invitation by the committee, where they would have proved their allegations beyond every doubt.
According to the committee chairman, Akande, “The committee started sitting on Thursday, June 4, 2020. We also sat on Friday, June 5, and Saturday, June 6.
“SaharaReporters, Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA), BudgiT, Concerned Nigerians, Independent Diaspora Nigerians Against Corruption, Mr. Bayo Oluwasanmi of SaharaReporters, and Mr. Babajide Otitoju were invited, but none of them honored the invitation.
“The Speaker did not have multiple accounts with Ecobank, the BVN ascribed to Wema Bank does not belong to him and the companies attributed to him in Wema Bank are not correct.
“Out of the 14 accounts attributed to him in Zenith Bank, only six belong to him. And out of the six that belong to him, only two are active.
“The companies ascribed to him in Zenith Bank do not belong to him. The Deputy Speaker did not attend any trip in Dubai as against the reports by SaharaReporters.
The committee also said it found out that the purchase of vehicles for the lawmakers were ratified by the Fund Management Committee (FMC) of the House in both the Eighth and Ninth Assemblies.
It was also revealed that the purchase of Toyota Prado and Land Cruiser cars for members were approved by the FMC and the Lagos State Public Procurement Agency (PPA).
“The purchase of operational vehicles for members of the Ninth Assembly was approved by the FMC members. The purchase of 36 Toyota Prado and six Land Cruisers were budgeted for and approved by the PPA. The allegation that N64 million was spent on social media influencers was also not true.”
The committee, however, recommended that a vote of confidence should be passed on the speaker.
The committee also recommended that the clerk of the house should begin the process of investigating how some House documents got leaked to the press and bring the errant staff to book and that the activities of the House should be digitalized for proper record keeping and monitoring.
In line with the recommendations, a member representing Badagry Constituency 2, Setonji David later moved a motion for the adoption and it was supported by Temitope Adewale (Ifako Ijaiye 2).
In a voice vote conducted by the Majority Leader, Sanni Agunbiade, who stood in for the speaker during the sitting, members agreed with the recommendations.
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