This is not the best of times for the Chairman of Aguiyi Ironsi International Market at Ladipo Market, Mushin, Lagos, Mr. Emmanuel Mbamara a.k.a PDP, following the allegation about N120m he reportedly siphoned and kept away.
It was gathered that the Executive members of the Union led by their Financial Secretary, Comrade Nkemakonam Ozoemena, wrote a petition to the Nigerian Police at Zone 2 Command, Onikan, over the alleged fraud which they said had characterized Mbamara’s leadership as he was unable to account or hand over to the union’s purse.
Following the petition, Mbamara was summoned to account for the alleged money he was said to have siphoned and why he was not remitting the money into Union’s account through the Financial Secretary to the Treasurer.
He reportedly admitted that he did not send the money to the union’s account and explained that he used some parts of the money to tar the market roads while the rest of the money amounting to millions of Naira was kept inside his safe in the union’s office.
As at the time of this report, it was not confirmed if the Police have retrieved the money from the safe as the embattled Chairman, Mbamara, could not be reached as his known phone numbers were switched off when contacted for comments.
While the Police were still wondering how Mbamara would keep such huge amount of money away from the Union, he secretly went to Court and obtained judgement in order to elongate his tenure, which elapsed on 14th August, 2020, in order not to conduct a fresh election citing Covid-19 precautionary measures as excuse against the Constitution of the Union, which stipulates that election must be conducted or Caretaker Committee constituted.
The information leaked to the traders and there was serious tension in the market over likely violence if Mbamara extends his tenure even for one day.
Following the impending danger looming in the market and intelligence gathered by security agencies, Mushin Local Government authorities summoned a stakeholders meeting where it was agreed that a Caretaker Committee will be constituted, which will conduct a free and fair election after the Covid-19 lockdown.
It was gathered that other Executive members accepted the resolution of the Mushin Local Government authorities except the embattled Chairman, Mbamara, who was not yet prepared to vacant his position as Chairman and besides he has pending criminal cases concerning the Union’s money with the Police.
Since the decision to constitute a Caretaker Committee to take over the affairs of the market pending the election on Monday, Mbamara was said to have been going round the market blackmailing the Mushin Local Government authorities misleading the traders that the Local Government wants to take over the market while inciting the traders to resist the move so that he will continue as Chairman.
However, traders who spoke with our correspondent, acknowledged that there might be violence if Mbamara continues after the expiration of his tenure but they do not want the Local Government to constitute a Caretaker Committee headed by them.