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FASHOLA: ASSEMBLY PANEL DEMANDS EVIDENCE FROM GROUP

By NBF NEWS
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Members of the Lagos State House of Assembly's seven-man probe panel investigating allegations of financial mismanagement levelled against Governor Babatunde Fashola (SAN), on Tuesday asked a group, the True Face of Lagos, to substantiate its allegations.

The Deputy Majority Leader and chairman of the panel, Dr. Ajibayo Adeyeye, had during its proceedings, said that the work of the body could not proceed if the True Face of Lagos was unable to provide evidence of what it alleged.

The leader of the group, Mr. Adebayo Adesina had differed when asked to substantiate the itemised charges against the governor, saying that the allegations arose from petitions received by unidentified sources.

Adeyeye said, 'Those you have given us, we will look into it and even those you have not, we will ask questions on them but it would do us a lot of good if you could substantiate these allegations with evidence.'

Mrs. Funmilayo Tejuosho, (representing Mushin I), had expressed reservations over Adesina's presentation, saying that it would not look good if he was unable to present the facts.

She said, 'I believe you do not have enough evidence to support your allegations but you have promised to bring them up.

'Even if you do not have all, let us have the ones you have as it might not look too good if you cannot substantiate some of this things.

'How are we going to start this investigation, when we don't have the facts? Some we might be able to reach out for but many go beyond this as you have not been too forthcoming on specifics.

'People might even be wondering why we are sitting here because in my own opinion, you have not been hitting the nail on the head.'

Sanai Agunbiade, (Ikorodu I), further said that some of the issues brought forward appeared strange to him, adding that the development made it more imperative for the group to shed new light on them.

He said, 'You talked about N1.5bn being spent for the demolition of Oshodi. So, if you say you know because I do not even know they spent N20m, you have to produce evidence.

'Bringing in the wife of the governor also demands that you produce your facts as she is not a government official. We believe in truth, so we will give you more time to provide more evidence.'

Mrs. Omowunmi Edet, (Oshodi Isolo II), said some of the allegations were too heavy, saying that there was the need for the group to substantiate them.

She said, 'When I went through some of these allegations, I thought that you have your facts and figures but the way things are going, the reverse is the case.

'If somebody is alleging certain things against government, using heavy words and calling names, then he must substantiate. What we are interested in is what would be the pedestal for which people will believe things alleged.'

Adesina, who was given the option of reappearing on a new date, apologised for his inability to come with the evidence, saying that the development stemmed from an attack on his home and office.

He said, 'I am sorry for this because this invitation was given to me on Saturday and security considerations became an issue.

'As I speak with you, the documents are scattered around in different locations and that is why I am unable to present the expected documents.

'I do not say that I have all that you requested for, but the ones I have I will present to the panel.'