The NBA said some agencies in the executive were acting illegally.
The Ibadan chapter of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has advised the Oyo State Government to ensure that its policies do not infringe on the rights of citizens.
The Chairman of the branch, Oluseun Abimbola, gave the advice on Tuesday in Ibadan in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
Mr. Abimbola warned against unlegislated policies embarked upon by some agencies of the government, saying they were against the rights of the people.
“I urge that before any executive action is taken, there is the need to ensure that executive policies are properly legislated without breaching any existing law and legal rights.
“We have, in our characteristic style as executive of the branch, made several constructive and direct engagements with the state government, ministries and their agencies.
“Regrettably, much has not changed with the several extra-legal policies introduced in the last one year,’’ he said.
Mr. Abimbola cited the Land Use Charge Law 2012 in which corporate bodies in the state were served with varying assessment rates for payment as land use charge.
“We addressed the government on this in November 2012, and it got an initial attention with an immediate suspension of implementation.
“However, private business owners have reached us to intervene as consultants and the ministry charged with the responsibility of implementation has continued to threaten to enforce the policy,’’ he said.
The lawyer, who also reacted to the ongoing urban renewal projects of the state government, said: “No doubt, the state is wearing a developing look; however, one of the enthronement of the rule of law in any clime is not just to prevent tyranny, but to save us from ourselves.”
“It is bad enough that in Nigeria, governments are quick to exercise their powers under the Land Use Act to acquire private properties for public purposes.
“They, however, do not show the same diligence to the computation and payment of due compensation to displaced owners or occupiers leading to numerous unnecessary law suits,’’ he said.
Mr. Abimbola warned against setting up of mobile courts by the state Ministry of Environment to summarily try matters considered a breach of environmental law. He appealed to magistrates to ensure that allegations brought before them constituted a known offence under the state criminal laws.
“We should avoid citizens being wrongly punished for infringing an executive order, as we are yet to know whether this action is backed by any legislation,’’ he said.
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