Speaker of Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa, has redeployed some senior officers in the state’s parliament hours after SaharaReporters revealed that he had used his office to approve a N10m monthly allocation to one of his three wives under the guise of gender inclusiveness programme for women.
The programme, according to a document seen by SaharaReporters, would be headed by his wife, who would also be in charge of the funds.
In a letter written by the Clerk of the House ordering the release of the funds, the monthly allocation would be for the establishing of a grassroots support programme, which will be centred on socio-economic and political programmes to be coordinated by wives of legislators at the various constituencies.
Checks by SaharaReporters revealed that no programme around socio-economic and political activities was established at various constituencies.
Wives of lawmakers interviewed claimed not to know of the allocation or receipt of any such amount from the Speaker’s wife.
They also denied having knowledge of the establishment of any socio-economic and political programmes at their constituencies.
They added that only two meetings have been held between 2018 and now.
Angered by the report, Obasa on Monday sanctioned the redeployment of some senior staff of the Assembly believed to have been behind the leakage of information to SaharaReporters.
Among those redeployed are Mrs Afolabi-Rufai Moriam Abiola, Chief Admin and HR Officer, who was moved from Employee Relations to LAHASCOM; Akinpelu Olabisi Ajokeade (Mrs), an Assistant Chief Finance and Accounts Officer, was moved from Employee Benefits to LALBRO; Abolaji Muinat Tanwa, an Assistant Chief Finance and Accounts Officer, was moved from FIS to Budget Planning and Statistics Directorate; Omitaomu Liafisi Ekundayo, Principal Finance and Accounts Officer, was also moved from FIS to Budget Planning and Statistics Directorate; and Sadiq Shade Shakirat, Senior Admin and HR Officer, was moved from Library to Learning and Development.
Others redeployed are Dosunmu Olanike Saidat nee Sarumi, Senior Finance and Accounts Officer, was moved from Employee Benefits to Budget Planning and Statistics Directorate; Ogunbadejo Adedayo Temitope, Senior Finance and Accounts Officer, was moved from Finance and Accounts Directorate to Budget Planning and Statistics Directorate; Gbadamosi Gbenga Michael, Senior Finance and Accounts Officer, was moved from Employee Benefits to LALBRO; Onumonu Adama Esther, a Senior Auditor, was moved from Internal Audit Unit to LAHASCOM, Morakinyo Stephen Olaolu, Finance and Accounts Officer II, was moved from Budget Expenditure Control to LALBRO; Idowu Olubusayo, a Finance and Accounts Officer II, was moved from Budget Expenditure Control to LAHASCOM, and Ogunmekan Shakirat Olajumoke, a Prin. Finance and Account Officer 1, was moved from Employee Benefits to Budget Planning and Statistics Directorate.
Commenting on the redeployment, a key officer in the state Assembly said those moved were those Obasa suspected he does not have close relationship with and could leak his corrupt activities to the public.
“Hon. Obasa pressed the panic button with the redeployment of principal staff of the Assembly’s Finance Department.
“The Speaker who has been in the eye of the storm in the recent past for his financial malfeasance and abuse of office due to SaharaReporters’ investigative journalism, accused the account officers in the Assembly of leaking confidential documents to the public.
“Those redeployed were suspected persons in key finance department in the Assembly,” the source said.
Before the latest revelation, SaharaReporters had exposed how Obasa used a number of companies registered under different names to execute contracts and siphon public funds.
The online news medium also exposed how he spent N17m monthly to maintain his personal residence and guest house from tax payers’ money.
The media organisation also revealed how the Speaker had mobilised thugs with N50m to invade its Civic Media Lab office in Ikeja, Lagos, to burn down the place with anybody found there as a way of getting back at SaharaReporters for exposing his fraudulent activities in the Lagos parliament where he had been feeding fat on public funds.