The governorship candidate of Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) in Oyo State, Comrade Abiodun Bamigboye has described imposition of security levies by the governor of the ruling party in the state, Senator Abiola Ajimobi as unconstitutional and means of unleash more hardship on the people.
He said security of life and properties of citizen is the basic social responsibility of the government at all levels.
The SPN gubernatorial candidate in Oyo state queried the decision of Senator Ajimobi/APC-led Oyo State government to impose what was reportedly called security levies on the poor traders and small business owners in the State.
Therefore, he demands an immediate reversal of this decision while calling on members of the Oyo State House of Assembly to immediately kick start the process of repealing the obnoxious law upon which the decision for the security levies was allegedly premised.
Bamigboye insists that the imposition of security levies on the people under the pretence of “generating fund to assist security agencies in their bid to maintain a crime free state” as claimed by the Governor himself is unconstitutional as it’s amounts to transferring the burden of funding of security agencies on the poor citizens of this state.
“This will not only compound the economic hardship under which the working people in the state groan but also at variance with the Chapter 2 of the 1999 Constitution as amended which stipulates among other things that the security of life and properties of every Nigerian regardless of ethnic and religious affiliation must be the fundamental responsibility of the Nigeria government at all levels”.
Bamigboye in his statement signed by the Head of media committee of SPN, Ogunjimi Isaac, laments that security situation in the state today despite all of the media propaganda by the APC-led government is not an enviable one.
He also states that security agencies like social services like education, health suffer from what can best be described as chronic underfunding.
However, he argued that to be blamed for this unfortunately state of underfunding which has greatly undermined the effectiveness and performances of the security agents and agencies are the corruption, undue wastages of public fund and lack of financial accountability among members of political class presiding over the Nigeria government at all levels and the security agencies themselves.
According to the SPN gubernatorial candidate, the security agents in the state would have been more effective and efficient if the huge proportion of the yearly budget often voted on security by the Federal Government, and the huge sum of fund Governors often set asides for themselves as security votes has been used judiciously over time to improve on both the working and living condition of the security agents.
Unfortunately, the exact amount and expenditure of the security votes running to millions of dollars on monthly basis are not bound by any law to be disclosed.
“The helplessness of the security agencies in the face of the growing security challenges in the state as well as the poverty of their rank and file security personnel, only serve to indicate that the so-called security votes are routinely pocketed by Senator Abiola-Ajimobi-led government,” he added
It is in the light of this, Bamigboye calls for immediate cancellation of security votes while charging legislators in the state house of assembly members to enact a law that will support the conversion of the funds that goes to the Governor under the pretence of security votes to a security fund to assist the security agencies at the state level.
He also suggests that such a fund must be subjected to the democratic control and management of the elected representatives of working people to ensure its adequate accountability while insisting that the security levies is unconstitutional and it will deepen the economic woe of the poor people.
Therefore, he calls on all the well-meaning people in the state including the labour organisation NLC, TUC, NBA and ASUU to prevail on Ajimobi-led government to rescind the decision to impose the security levies.