Nigeria: Threat of Litigation Dogs July Lagos LG Poll

The controversy over the creation of local council development areas in Lagos is rearing its ugly head ahead of the July 24 local government election in the state.

The state Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC) had announced the date for the conduct of the elections, culminating in increased political activities in the state.

The commission plans to conduct chairmanship and councillorship elections into the 20 local governments councils (LGCs) and the 37 LCDAs in the state.

But a group, United Foundation for Survival and Sustainability, a pro-democracy group, has asked LASIEC not to conduct elections into the 37 additionally created LGCs.

In a statement signed by its chairman, Otunba Ahmed Adekunle, the group warned that "any deviation from this advice will be legally challenged completely" in the court.

It said the electoral body only has the right to conduct election into the constitutionally designated 20 local government councils and not the 37 local council development areas as allowed by law.

Daily Trust reports that the controversy over the 37 LCDAs has lingered since 2003 when they were created by then governor of the state, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

But the group is now challenging the legality of conducting elections in the 37 LCDAs.

In a chat with Daily Trust, spokesman of the APC, Mr. Seye Oladejo, said the group has the right to take legal action but that the party was preoccupied with preparing for the elections.

However, a constitutional lawyer, Dr. Wumi Bewaji, in a chat with our correspondent said the Supreme Court has already decided on the controversy over the creation of the LCDAs.

He said while the group has a right to make good its threat, it would amount to re-litigation

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