By Chinelo Obogo, Lagos
Former Deputy National Chairman and Board of Trustees member of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Olabode George has warned the Lagos State chapter of the party against demanding administrative fees from aspirants, saying such extra payment is illegal.
The Lagos State Working Committee in a memo dated April 19 and sent to all aspirants signed by the State Publicity Secretary of the party, Hakeem Amode, had stated that the State Assembly aspirants should pay an administrative fee of N50,000 to the state financial Secretary.
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It also directed that the sum of N200,000, N350,000 and N500,000 should be paid by Federal House of Representatives aspirants, Senatorial aspirants and governorship aspirants respectfully as an administrative fee.
George, in a release he personally signed Tuesday, warned the aspirants to ignore such directives, saying such ‘administrative charge’ is unknown to the PDP constitution and therefore is illegal.
George also called on the National Chairman of the party, Iyorchia Ayu, to call the Lagos Exco to order and stop them from imposing unnecessary fees on aspirants who have already paid the money for forms of intent and nomination forms for their desired positions at the party headquarters.
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He said that all the states chapters will get a certain percentage of the money already paid to the national body of the party, hence there is no need to further charge the aspirants any fees.
George further said if the Lagos State Working Committee embarks on any extortion or illegal collection of money from the aspirants, he will not hesitate to petition the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
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‘I hereby warn all our aspirants to be vigilant and not to pay any illegal fees. The act of extortion being embarked upon by the Lagos exco should be shunned and ignored.
‘I equally warn the exco not to extort our party members. They are to pay only fees that are legal,’ George said.