Indy Hall Assembly Debates AG’s Conduct over Refusal to Disburse Election Fund

By – Aduwo Ayodele

The Great Independence Hall of Residence Legislative Council, on Tuesday, 7th of May, 2024, raised concern about the hall’s Administrator General, Ogunremi Samuel’s refusal to disburse ratified election budget to KRIEC, the electoral body which was in charge of the recently conducted hall election.

At its sitting, held at the Hall’s Cafeteria, which was attended by members of the Executive Council, representatives of the electoral commission’s body, newly elected members of the hall assembly, among others, the Assembly engaged in a debate with the hall’s Administrator General over his refusal to disburse the approved grand sum of one hundred and forty-four thousand, three hundred and ninety-six naira (#144,396), for the hall’s 2024 election activities.

Following the electoral commission’s report during the proceedings of the house, as stated by the commission’s Chairman, that it did not receive funds for its operation, honorable members of the Assembly questioned the hall Administrator General’s ‘action in disrespect‘ to the authority of the Assembly.

Speaking to Indypress during a short recess of the Assembly, the Speaker of the Assembly, Rt. Honorable Olaoye Samuel noted that the issue and revolving concerns with regard to the Administrator General’s conduct would be made known to the Hall Management.

This is an issue that we have been deliberating on for a while. As you can see, the house made a decision, and resolution was sent to the executive council as regards the disbursement of KRIEC funds. But unfortunately, the executive, the AG said he has the right to reject the resolution because he feels the KRIEC can fund itself, that even if the house make a decision, the executive council can still counter it” the Speaker said.

The money for the sales of form and everything was sent into the KRIEC members account which was suppose to be deposited into the hall’s account. Those are the issues we have. On the way forward, we are going to inform the hall management, we will send out resolution to them. During our next sitting, we are going to make a final decision” the Speaker concluded.

Stating his contrary view, the Administrator General of the Hall, Ogunremi Samuel noted that it was a convention for the electoral body to expend internally generated funds from forms or fines for the general conduct of the hall’s election.

“Last year, they didn’t withdraw money. The year before last year they didn’t withdraw money. During AG Yusuf, they didn’t withdraw money. Normal, they will come to the Assembly to ratify budget. The purpose of ratification is to regulate the amount they will spend” the Administrator General said.

“Sincerely, as I am if you give me one dime that is meant for the hall, I will send it to the hall’s account. For a proper process, constitutionally, every money must pass through  the hall’s account. But we had how many days to do election? We used less than three weeks for the whole electoral process. Is that time we will go and be withdrawing? Now if I withdraw 140,000, how much would we have left in hall account? 508000?” the Administrator General added

“If there is now mismanagement of funds, how should I be running around helter skelter for it? The reason why we allowed KRIEC to collect money into their own personal account is because the number of people that contested for election is known; it is a very simple math. A lot of people that contested for election is known, a lot of people that paid for fine is known, a lot of everything that happened is known. And there is a statement report for it. So why are we now stressing ourselves” the AG said.

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