From Fred Itua, Abuja

The Interim Management Committee of the Association of Local Government Area of Nigeria (ALGON), has alleged that the All Progressives Congress Presidential Candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu in his quest to clinch power, is influencing some state local government chairmen to hijack the association and influence the grassroots level votes.

According to a statement signed by the press secretary, Mr. Kingsley Gozie, the Association disclosed that Tinubu, through the assistance of ally whom he appointed to head the local government directorates of his campaign council, allegedly doled out funds to some local government chairmen, even from the opposition, during the inaugural presidential campaign council meeting, which held in Abuja on Wednesday, the 11th day of January 2023.

The statement read in part: “Our attention was recently brought to a news of largesse sharing done by a faction of the Association to some state chairmen and factional BOT members at a hotel in Abuja on Wednesday the 11th day of January during an inaugural Tinubu/Shettima presidential campaign council meeting which was disguised as NEC meeting.

“We have it under good authority that Tinubu his ally to buy off chairmen, ALGON, in order to influence to his advantage, grassroots votes ahead of the February 25th presidential election.

“We know why his ally is working overtime to secure victory for his paymaster. It is because he knows that should he contribute in clinching victory for Tinubu, his crimes will be swept under the carpet.

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“Also it is no news that the factional BOT was dissolved because of its involvement in corruption and sharp practices. We are not surprised that they were partakers of the largesse sharing because long throat and lack of self control, have always been their forte.

“Tinubu has overtime shown his desperation, but the lowest is using his puppet, whom he appointed to lead the local government directorates of his campaign council to bribe and buy over the Association, the factional BOT and State Chairmen all in a bid to win presidency.

“We are totally gobsmacked at the length he has gone with the local government and are utterly disappointed at Chairmen, who chose to sell out their rights, and local government.

“When a self acclaimed factional BOT who is supposed to protect, continues to destroy and fuel crisis by being biased, greedy, and meddling into political decision making, it goes to show that it has taken sides and now has an interest which is to enrich their pockets. The above assertion is the case of the Hon. Ategbero and his cronies.

“Meanwhile, we are using this medium to reiterate that Alabi is not qualified to be ALGON’s president, he hijacked the association with the help of higher shadow parties, he (Alabi), is a local council development area chairman and not from any of the constitutionally recognized local government areas in Nigeria,” he added.