Hon Patrick Aguinede
The Suspended Chairman of Esan West Local Government Area of Edo State, Hon Patrick Aguinede, has hit back at the State governor, Godwin Obaseki for linking his removal from office to corruption.
Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Mr. Monday Osaigbovo, on Tuesday, alleged that Mr Aguinede acquired N30m property and refused to pay agency levy to the client prior to his suspension for two months to pave way for a thorough investigation into allegations of fraud and abuse of office against him.
The Commissioner, who recalled that governor Obaseki had always reiterated his zero tolerance for corrupt practices, accused Aguinede of failing to remit complete money collected as Internally Generated Revenue in the Council to the Government coffers.
Mr Patrick Aguinede who claimed to have accepted his removal from office in good faith, said the issue of buying a house for N30m was not a government matter and should not be made a state government affair, as he was rich as far back as 1988.
He said he would appear before any panel set up to investigate the allegations.
According to the Commissioner, one of the allegations was that an estate agent petitioned Aguinede that he bought a house for him for N30m and Aguinede refused to pay his agency fees.
“Aguinede was alleged not to have remitted complete money collected as Internally Generated Revenue.
“The statistics he gave as the number of tricycles and motorcycles operating in Esan West is 3000.
“If he collected N150 each from them, that amounts to N9m monthly but Aguinede was remitting only N4.5m.
“The Governor always warned us that anybody caught would not only be sacked but be prosecuted”.
Aguinede’s suspension made it three chairmen now removed by Governor Obaseki. Others include Alhaji Yakson Musa of Etsako West and Alhaji Aremiyau Momoh of Etsako East.[NewsNaira]
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