ONDO PDP: Banji Okunomo Not Qualified For The Game – Comr. Tomiwa Mattew - SephoraNews- Nigeria Entertainment Blog SephoraNews- Nigeria Entertainment Blog: ONDO PDP: Banji Okunomo Not Qualified For The Game – Comr. Tomiwa Mattew

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Thursday, 2 July 2020

ONDO PDP: Banji Okunomo Not Qualified For The Game – Comr. Tomiwa Mattew

Ondo PDP: Banji Okunomo is not qualified to hold any Public Office

1.We have watched with  assuming interest, events leading to the selection of a candidate to fly the flag of our great party, the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP) and determined to ensure a credible process with inherent integrity. Events, as happened in Zamfara, Rivers and recently Bayelsa, have shown that a political party labours in vain which toys with the process of the emergence of its candidate. We shall not stand by and allow any aspirant which lacks requisite integrity either in terms of his character or documents pollute the internal process with dire consequences at the general election, hence our concern and this letter.

2. We see Okunomo as a young man with abundant courage and thought he was rather striving to make himself popular in the political arena until a week ago when he felt qualified to contest the party’s gubernatorial primary, obtaining the form with a whooping sum of N 25 Million (Twenty Five Million Naira). This has finally put his character in the public domain and like Ceaser’s wife, he must be above board.

3.  Pages 1-3 of the copy of manifesto he submitted to the Senator Bode Olajumoke-led Screening Advisory Committee show, among others, that Okunomo joined the Federal Public Service as an employee of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) in 2004 and has remained ever since. While a full time public servant, he equally held several full time political appointments, the climax of which was the Chairman of Ilaje Local Government in 2011.

4. Okunomo served as Chairman of Ilaje Local Government 2011-2013, elected Publicity Secretary of the PDP in 2014 till date until the forthcoming Congress of the party later in the year. In that position, according to the document submitted by him, he was the Director General of Senator Nicholas Tofowomo Campaign Organisation for the election held in October 2019. While carrying out these full time political activities, Okunomo was enjoying undeserving promotion at the NDDC where he said he was promoted,  in 2019,  as a Principal Manager of the Commission for work never done. The relationship between people like Okunomo and a syndicate of officials who specialize in perverting the rules of the public service is currently under investigation at the Commission by the appropriate security agency.

5. Predictably, Okunomo fraudulently  did not include in the said document, the fact that while on Federal full employment and salary, he is simultaneously a full time Law  student at the Elizade University on a full sponsored scholarship of the Federal Government through the Amnesty Programme.

6. Banji Okunomo, in 2016, was also appointed a Senior Special Assistant to the Governor in 2015, until the end of the Mimiko administration in February 2017. When the Akeredolu government recently paid part of the outstanding salaries of the political appointees of the Mimiko administration, Banji Okunomo was one of the beneficiaries.

6. While on page 3, he stopped his profile abruptly as the Director General of Senator Tofowomo campaigns, he hide his full time studentship,  on full Federal Government scholarship which he had started enjoying since 2017 as a Student on the Amnesty Programme. Yet as part of his purported awards at the end of page 7 of his manifesto, he listed one of his awards in 2018 as Most Influential Law Student Association of Nigeria (Lawsan) Elizade University.

7. To buttress the above,  the Maiden Law Week Dinner Award Night of Lawsan Elizade University held at the university on 16th June 2018, was  presided over by Okunomo as President of the Association. Copy of the brochure of the event showing the photographs of Banji Okunomo and other members of the Executive Committee of the Association is attached herewith to buttress our claims.

8. We also have it on good authority that the said Banji Okunomo who, according to his submitted profile, graduated from the Federal University of Science and Technology Akure (FUTA)  as a Science student in Pure and Applied Biochemistry in 2001, recently fraudulently and criminally presented himself to the West African Examinations Council in a Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) meant for current  final year students and for which he also by some fraudulent means obtained the  Ordinary levels subjects in the Arts as a prerequisite to study Law at the Elizade University. This scam of an examination held at a WAEC Centre in a remote village of Ilaje Local Government, towards the Ondo/ Ogun boundary is subject of current security investigations.

9. In effect, Banji Okunomo, a former Chairman of a Local Government, a full time Federal Civil Servant at the NDDC, by virtue of which he is not qualified for the enjoyment of the scholarship and other educational support programmes of the Amnesty Programme, criminally and under false pretences that he is so qualified, presented himself to the authority of the  West African Examinations Council and or the Amnesty Programme and has since been receiving salaries, emoluments, scholarships and other perquisites of office from sundry public sources, which he knows and ought to know is unlawful, illegal, unethical,  unacceptable and disqualify him from holding any public office.

10.  Mr. Chairman sir, we are raising this genuine concern on the good authority that Banji Okunomo is currently under investigation by the ruling party, in which government he is an employee and illegally enjoying Amnesty rights and thus has all the weapons to nail. We are reliably informed that one of the leaders of the ruling party has in the past raised the issue of Okunomo’s defrauding of government while simultaneously receiving salaries from the NDDC as a civil servant and as a political appointee of the Ondo State government.

11. As stated on page 3 of his manifesto, Okunomo who,  as a civil servant, was one of the aides of Dr. Benson Enikuemehin, when the latter was the Commissioner representing Ondo State on the Board of NDDC, joined the Labour Party government of Dr. Olusegun Mimiko in 2010 and was, in 2011, appointed Chairman of Ilaje Local Government. We have it on good authority that since then, Banji Okunomo has never stepped into his office as a civil servant. The syndicate criminal gang in the Commission deliberately changed his office from the Port Harcourt head office to the moribund Igbokoda, Ondo State project office where Okunomo has a free rein as an officer absent without leave (AWOL) for at least 10 years and fraudulently on full salaries made possible by the syndicate to which he gives returns. The activities are currently subject to investigation by the appropriate security agency.

12 . Mr. Chairman, Section 48 (1) (l) of our party constitution provides inter alia.
“ Subject to the provisions of this constitution, any member holding any office in the Party at any level shall be deemed to have resigned that office, if he or she assumes any of the following offices- any full time employment or appointment in the public service of the Federation, State or Local Government “
13. The implications of the above is that the holding of the office of the Publicity Secretary of the part,  from which Okunomo has not officially resigned, and simultaneously with his employment as staff of the NDDC, since 2014, is an infraction of the constitution of the party which disqualifies him from further  benefits of positions from the party. In other  words, he cannot persist in sin against the Party and seek for more grace therefrom. Besides, by our constitution, the Governor is the Leader of the party at the State level. Thus, a leader with such ethical and integrity albatross cannot legitimately query such violations of which himself has created an illegal precedent.

14. In the same vein, a person who spent all his career as a civil servant defrauding the government and public by permanently absconding from office, collecting salaries for work not done, in addition to illegally receiving other salaries, scholarships and emoluments from other public sources, cannot legally and legitimately provide leadership as Governor.

15. In addition, some of the contracts involved in by the said Banji Okunomo, either directly or through phoney companies are currently part of the projects being currently investigated by the Buhari administration. Part of the questions to which we may require answers is the source of his resources which he is pouring into politics outside his income as a middle level officer on a salary of less than N250, 000. 00 (Two Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira) only.

16. Mr. Chairman sir, we are not oblivious of the fact that Banji Okunomo was your colleague in the State Executive Committee but leadership entails the needed  courage to cleanse our gubernatorial process of the pollution that may be brought upon it by Banji Okunomo’s participation. We are aware that a group of public interest legal practitioners are already assembled to set the necessary pre-election  legal machinery in motion asking the following questions:
 Whether as a Public Officer, being on a full time employment  of the NDDC, at all times material to this petition, particularly from 2011 thence, Banji Okunomo could legally been receiving salaries from the Commission while also receiving salaries and or other emoluments of any other public office including as the Chairman of Ilaje Local Government, Senior Special Assistant to the Governor etc an act contrary to the Code of Conduct for public officers made pursuant to the Code of Conduct contained in the 5th Schedule of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and which provides as follows:
 “a public officer shall.. not receive or be paid the emoluments of any public office at the same time as he receives or is paid the emoluments of any other public office
Whether as a Public Officer, being on a full time employment of the NDDC, at all times material to this Petition, particularly from 2011 thence, Banji Okunomo could legally abscond from duty without leave, an act  considered of very serious wrongdoing and improper behaviour  which is inimical to the image of the service and which can be investigated and if proven under the Civil Service Rules made pursuant to the Code of Conduct contained in Schedule 5 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Whether as a former Chairman of a Local Government, a full time Federal Civil Servant at the NDDC  at all times material to this Petition, particularly from2011 thence, Banji  Okunomo is not disqualified from  the enjoyment of the scholarship of the Amnesty  Programme for which he criminally and under false pretences that he is so qualified, presented himself to the authority of the Amnesty Programme and has since been receiving salaries, emoluments, scholarships and other perquisites of office from sundry public sources, which he knows and ought to know is unlawful, illegal, unethical,  unacceptable and disqualify him from holding any public office.
Whether as a Public Officer, being on a full time employment of the NDDC at all times material to this Petition, particularly from 2011 thence,  Banji Okunomo could simultaneously proceed on a full time 5 year course as a student of Law at the Elizade University, Ilara Mokin Ondo State, without due approval an act which is considered wrongful and inimical to the image of the Service under the Civil Service Rules.
Whether as a Public Officer, being on a full time employment of the NDDC at all times material to this Petition, particularly 2011 thence, Banji Okunomo can lawfully, under the Civil Service Rules, earn his full promotion in 2012, 2015 and 2019 when during these periods he held political appointments as  Chairman Ilaje Local Government (2011-2013),  Publicity Secretary of the Ondo State Chapter of the PDP (2016-2020), Director General of the Senator Nicholas Tofowomo Campaign Organisation.
Whether the right of the said Banji Okunomo as a Public Officer to participate in politics include involvement in criminal activities and violation of the provisions of the Public Service Rules and the Code of Conduct for Public Officers made pursuant to the Code of Conduct contained in the 5th Schedule of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Whether if the foregoing questions are answered in the affirmative, the Peoples Democratic Party, a Political Party created under and by virtue of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) can legally, lawfully and legitimately present the said Banji Okunomo as its candidate for election into public office, particularly in the forthcoming Ondo State gubernatorial election and if it does present him, whether the Independent National Electoral Commission or a court of competent jurisdiction ought not disqualify him at any time before, during and after the said election.



Comr Tomiwa Mathews
Coordinator PDP Youths integrity Network
1st of July,2020.
07032979415
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