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ALGON gives Immigration quit notice

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ALGON gives quit notice to Immigration

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The elected 33 local government chairmen in Oyo State, under the aegis of Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON), have issued a quit notice to the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) to vacate the offices located within the local governments.

This is as the council chairmen gave a 24-hour ultimatum to the Comptroller General of Immigration to fish out the officers who harassed and assaulted the Chairman, Ibadan North Local Government, Mr Sahib Oladayo, on Wednesday.

The council bosses spoke through ALGON Chairman Sikiru Sanda while addressing a news conference to express their displeasure about the incident, which led to pandemonium on the premises of the NIS, Agodi Gate, Ibadan.

The council area and the NIS Oyo State Command are located in the same vicinity.

Sanda, the chairman of Egbeda Local Government, who described the incident as a sad moment for the council chairmen, said their prompt intervention prevented the issue from degenerating into a full crisis that would have disrupted the peace of the city.

Efforts to get the reaction of the command’s Public Relations Officer, Mr Olufemi Adetunji, proved futile, as calls made to his line were not answered, while messages were yet to be responded to as at the time of this report..

He said: “This is a sad moment for us the 33 local government chairmen in Oyo State. One of our colleagues, the Chairman of Ibadan North Local Government, Mr Sahib Oladayo, was  embarrassed and assaulted on Wednesday by officials of the Nigeria Immigration Service despite that they are in the same neighbourhood.

“This is a complete abuse of the uniform. We try to maintain peace as propagated by our governor and we do not want to cause embarrassment for Oyo State. Our governor has put in a lot of efforts to maintain security in the state and do not want anything that will cause crisis for us.

“We want to appeal and charge the Comptroller General of Immigration that all the immigration offices across the 33 local government areas should be vacated. We no longer need them in our offices again.

“Also, we want the Comptroller General of Immigration to produce the perpetrator of the incident within 24 hours or the person will face legal action. It is embarrassing.

“The chairman was seriously dealt with yesterday (Wednesday). If the executive chairman, the chief security officer of a local government council can be treated that way, what is the fate of the common man? We are embarrassed and don’t want such to occur again. We want to assure the people of the state that we the chairmen are law-abiding citizens.

“Also, we want to implore the immigration officer at Agodi to apologise to the people of Oyo State and particularly the chairman of Ibadan North Local Government over the incident.”

Narrating his ordeal, the Ibadan North LGA Chairman, Mr Oladayo, said he had gone to the NIS Command on invitation of one of his councillors on the allegation that the official letterhead of the council had been falsely presented at the Command by individuals.

“I was called by one of my councilors that the officer in charge of passport was complaining that my official letterhead has been brought to their office many times. She was about to renew her passport with my official letter. I went there on official visit with my camera man, media aide, councillor and the majority leader of the House.

“I was identified at the gate to enter and went straight to the PCO office. She said people have been bringing my letterhead and I clarified that I have not been issuing such letters. I was waiting for the councillor to join me to go to the office and suddenly heard a loud noise.

“They then moved close to us, asking us to hurriedly leave. My cameraman told them that I was waiting for the councillor but they said they don’t give a damn if I was the chairman. I inquired what the problem was and noise ensued.

“I saw them beating some of my boys and inquired to know, but was attacked while trying to do so. I was brutalised. The DPO Testing Ground station came around and I told him I only went there to clarify the allegation of issuing letters. They promised to deal with the situation and produce the officer.

“I managed to get the crowd to return to the council. Around 5.30pm, the DPO called me that they were not allowed to pick their cars. I moved out again, saw that tyres of vehicles had been deflated. So, I ordered vulcanizers to put back air into the deflated tyres.”

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