The Benue House of Assembly has suspended six local government chairmen for three months over alleged misappropriation of public funds and gross misconduct.
The House suspended the chairmen on Monday during plenary in Makurdi.
The suspended chairmen were those of Oju LGA, Mr. Augustine Okwoche; Makurdi LGA, Mrs. Justina Akange Audu; Kwande LGA, Mr. Terdoo Kenti; and his deputy, Mr. Aondowaser Andrew.
Others were the chairmen of Agatu LGA, Mrs. Comfort Echoda and her deputy, Mr. Joseph Ngbede; Okpokwu LGA, Mr. Francis Oguche; and Gboko LGA, Mrs. Becky Orpin.
The House had received a correspondence from Governor Samuel Ortom, accusing the suspended chairmen of misappropriating local government funds, gross misconduct and abuse of office.
Ortom, in his correspondence, urged the House to approve the suspension of the accused chairmen.
In its decision, the House unanimously agreed that the chairmen be suspended for three months while they investigate the allegations against them, saying that their offences were contrary to the Local Government Area Law.
News Agency of Nigeria reports that all the local government chairmen suspended are members of the All Progressives Congress.
The publicity Secretary of APC in the state, Mr. James Ornguga, has described the suspension of its six local government chairmen as “politically motivated.”
Ornguga told NAN on Monday in Makurdi that the allegations of financial impropriety against them were “smokescreen.”
“If you say their suspension was due to financial impropriety, how about that of Buruku local government council chairman, who is related to the governor?
“There are more damaging allegations against her, but the governor has chosen to sweep them under carpet.
“The chairman of Apa local government had the same issues against him, but as soon as he decamped from the APC to the PDP, all allegations were dropped.
“The governor is just being vindictive and punitive just because the chairmen refused to decamp to the PDP with him. The man is just revealing his true colours. But, not to worry, he has but a short time to leave office,” he said.
Also commenting on the suspension of all eight APC lawmakers by the Benue Assembly, Ornguga said the matter was already in court.