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Obaseki sacks Edo LG boss over alleged fraud

The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has sworn-in Alhaji Imonofi Osumah as the Chairman of Etsako West Local Government, after Yakubu Musa, the erstwhile chairman was removed for an alleged involvement in a N46m fraud.

Obaseki, while swearing Osumah in at the Government House in Benin City, said investigations by a panel constituted by the state government revealed that the former LG boss engaged in fraudulent activities.

The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Adams Oshiomhole, hails from the Etsako West LGA.

Obaseki maintained that his administration had zero-tolerance for corruption and negligence of duty, noting that the local government managers must perform their duties.

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“With the permission and authorisation of the Edo State House of Assembly, we dropped Yakubu Musa for engaging in corrupt activities. He was dropped based on the investigations conducted following reports and observations at the monthly Joint Account Allocation Committee meetings I presided over.

Local councils in urban areas have common traits. They are heavily indebted, have huge salary arrears and the level of accountability is very poor. I charge you to ensure you do better and guard against corrupt acts. We have zero-tolerance for corruption,” he said.

The new chairman, Osumah, thanked the governor for the opportunity to serve and pledged loyalty and commitment to work with the governor in developing the council area.

Recall that a panel of inquiry was on September 16, 2019, constituted by the Edo State Government to investigate the alleged diversion of funds in Etsako West LGA, after the case was discovered at the JAAC meeting.

The panel’s findings revealed that over N46m was paid to two ghost workers by a staff member employed by the erstwhile chairman.

The panel, however, recommended that Musa be “removed from office on the grounds of negligence of duty, improper accounting and auditing of the council’s finances, lack of adequate supervision of staff and for allowing fraud under his nose.”