Oyo Rep Slammed For Appointing 43 Legislative Aides

By Michael Jegede

Political office holders have been advised to put a stop to the practice of deceiving the people to gain undue political advantage by making promises or taking decisions that are not in tune with the current economic reality in the country occasioned by the dwindling oil revenue.

An aspirant for the House of Representatives in the 2015 general election on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Hon. Olayinka Oladimeji Segelu, gave the advice in a statement issued in Abuja.

He was reacting to the appointment of 43 legislative aides by the lawmaker representing his constituency, Akinyele/Lagelu Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Hon. Temitope Olatoye aka Sugar.

Olatoye, a member of All Progressives Congress (APC) and first-term legislator in the Green Chamber, was recently reported to have presented letters of appointment to 43 legislative aides (33 Legislative Assistants and 10 Senior Legislative Aides), in an event held at the party’s secretariat in Ejioku, Lagelu Local Government Area of Oyo State.

Describing the move as an attempt to fool the people, Hon. Segelu said: “It is an art of deceit carried too far. It is unimaginable that at a time when the Federal and state governments are doing everything possible to reduce the cost of governance, a lawmaker could be deceiving the people, with this illegal and fraudulent act cloaked as appointment of 43 Legislative Aides, whereas every member of the House of Representatives is statutorily allowed to appoint only a maximum of five aides according to the National Assembly Service Commission Rules.”

Segelu, who had served as Legislative Assistant and Personal Assistant to a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, and also a Personal Assistant to a Senator for over a decade, further explained that “a member of the House of Representatives and even a Senator (apart from principal officers) can only recommend the appointment of a Senior Legislative Aide (SLA), a Legislative Aide (LA1), a Legislative Assistant (LA2), a Personal Assistant (PA) and a secretary, making a total of five aides. It is therefore completely out of place and preposterous for a lawmaker to come out in the public to say he is distributing appointment letters to 43 legislative aides. It is an aberration and illegality of the highest order.”

While recognizing the need for lawmakers to embark on poverty alleviation and empowerment of their constituents in addition to their primary duties as legislators, Hon. Segelu enjoined politicians to avoid acts of deceits capable of compounding the woes of victims of such phony appointments, suggesting that “youths should be assisted to undergo training in technical skills acquisition and formal education to give them permanent means of livelihood and self-reliance so as to become functional members of the society rather than being made idle hands through questionable appointments capable of making them vulnerable to social vices.”

The PDP chieftain opined that legislative business requires high level of discipline, dedication and commitment on the part of lawmakers to the cause of the people, hence, “Hon Olatoye aka Sugar should shun showmanship and art of playing to the gallery and concentrate on issues and projects that will impact positively on the lives of the entire people of Akinyele/Lagelu Federal Constituency.”