Friday, 16 March 2018



Tax the Rich, Not the Poor


The Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) Lagos State Chapter condemns the new land use charge recently introduced by Lagos state government and calls for the total repeal of the law. We are not swayed by the purported reduction of the charges which is a well-worn tactic to deceive the masses to believing that the government has shifted ground while it has actually settled for the originally intended figure. The masses have experienced similar tactics many times with different hikes in fuel price.

We strongly hold that the Lagos State Government does not have moral basis to impose any new tax on the people having not accounted for how the state revenue realized from the previous taxes has been spent. Yes, it is true that the state government has embarked on a few infrastructural projects, but there is utter lack of accountability and transparency in those projects as Lagosians do not know their cost.

We are aware that all the attempts by media and civil society organisations to know the costs of the projects are rebuffed. This can only mean that the costs of the projects are criminally inflated. It also suggests that the real intention behind those projects is not necessarily for public good but creating a conduit for looting of the state resources. Besides, the entire state budget is treated as a classified document while procurement process is kept as a state secret. This is not only undemocratic but also fraudulent. This is why we see the increase as a means of maintaining opulent lifestyles of political office holders both past and present.

We therefore reject the justification by Governor Ambode that the tax increase is needed in order to finance infrastructures. We believe that the current revenue of the state if judiciously and democratically managed can largely finance not only provision of physical infrastructures such as roads, railways and waterways but also quality education, health care and decent housing. To achieve this, we call for all political office holders to be placed on the salary structure of civil servants and the cancellation of criminal life pension and severance pays for former governors and other political office holders.  We also call for public works department to be well equipped and staff well trained such that they can execute any construction work and not just reduced to patching of bad portions of the road. Also importantly, all projects must be put under democratic control of elected representatives of workers, community people and relevant interest groups. All these the SPN will implement if we are in the government of Lagos

We are also of the view that the purported reduction and so-called relief in the land use charge have not addressed the issue of market valuation of properties which can be used to exploit the people by the government and its agents. In any case, we strongly hold that the masses who struggle to build houses in the face of the failure of the government in its responsibility of providing social low-cost mass housing for them must not pay any tax on property.  Besides, the failure of the government in its social responsibilities also mean that ordinary people have to provide electricity, water, children education and family health care at huge costs.  Therefore, it would be a double tragedy asking such ordinary people to pay additional tax.

We also hold that asking the ordinary people who are landlords to pay land use charge amounts to double taxation as they are not exempted from personal income tax. Indeed, many of these landlords use the rent as a means of eking out a living and pay bills that they would not have if the government plays its roles. 

However, we are not against making the rich to pay tax on properties most of which are luxury. We indeed call for progressive tax that puts more tax burden on the rich and super rich. The land use charge is not a progressive tax. It is disproportionately against ordinary people in low and medium income categories.

By and large, the SPN holds strongly that meeting the needs and aspiration of the people in terms of job creation for all, putting in place basic and functional infrastructure/amenities will require a planned economy that rest on the nationalization of the commanding heights of the economy under the working class democratic management and control. This is the only way resources on a very large scale can be channeled towards economic and social transformation devoid of profligacy, corruption and huge profitability to a few at the expense of the vast majority.  

We also see the land use charge as the continuation of anti-poor mega city agenda of the APC government of Lagos which accounts for unjust demolitions of houses, settlements, shops and workshops of the ordinary people as well as arbitrary arrest, heavy fine and imprisonment of the poor masses over sundry offences by Lagos State task force and tribunal.

We therefore call for a wider mass mobilisation of community associations, trade unions, landlords and tenants' associations, youth organizations, human right groups, professional groups to resist not only land use charge but all anti-poor attacks by the Lagos State government. .


Rufus Olusesan                                                                            Monsuru Soyombo
Chairperson                                                                                      Publicity Secretary
08034726127                                                                                    08189504337

Saturday, 3 March 2018


The first and the most important responsibility of any serious government is to guarantee security of lives and properties of the citizens and all inhabitants of the state. Any government that falls short of this is a failed government. It was on this basis that the Jonathan administration was expunged by Nigerians hoping to find solace in the present administration of General Muhammadu Buhari due to his experience as a general. As at the time of election and electioneering campaign, we had informed Nigerians according to our ideology and perspective that it is not about change in the administrators whose function is just to administer within the existing system but change in the entire system.

The hope and expectations of average Nigerians were high, our belief was that the present administration will deliver our state from the hands of insurgents, create more employment and provide adequate infrastructure so that we would have a peaceful country where everybody would sleep with our two eyes closed. 

Several attacks and abduction have been carried out on our brothers and sisters in Kaduna, Yobe, Adamawa, Borno, Benue etc. Countless Nigerians have lost their lives and properties. This shows that the present administration is either unwilling or not capable to put an end to the scourge; they are blaming the action on “Unknown Persons”. Is this how Nigerians will fold their arms and stand aloof until we all land in IDP camps or seek asylum in refugee camps in nearby countries? History will never forget our roles in the liberation or subjugation of our country.

In the wake of the New Year when everybody was expecting goodwill message to serve as succor for the fuel hike and endless queue at our filling stations across the nation, our hope was truncated by the awful news of gruesome and heinous murder of over 73 Nigerians in Gumi and Logo Local Government of Benue state which resulted in mass burial amidst rains of tears from all those who know the value of a single life. As usual, the present administration cannot apprehend the perpetrators of the dastardly act but this time blamed the killing on “herdsmen” 

On Monday 26th of February 2018 Kasuwan Magani in Kaduna state was ravaged with another violence which also claimed a lot of lives and many properties were set ablaze. The government is yet to unravel the perpetrators of the mayhem blaming the incident on “Culprits”.

The most excruciating and exasperating part of it is the recent abduction of 110 schoolgirls from the government Girls science and technology college, Dapchi, Yobe state on the 19th of February 2018. The abductors drove the students who were shouting for help according to an eye witness in their buses through roads to their destination without being noticed or apprehended by security agents. To us, it is suspicious. This time, the act is blamed on “Boko Haram”.

Lest we forget, 276 school girls were abducted from their school in the North-East Nigerian town of Chibok in 2014 by a militant group called Boko Haram. These girls are now popularly known and referred to as “Chibok Girls”. It is obvious that both the past administration (PDP) and the present administration (APC) have combined their might and forces but could not secure the release of all our girls. Although, out of the above mentioned number, over 100 Chibok girls that have been “rescued” by Buhari’s administration have been more or less replaced in the den of Boko Haram with the Dapchi girls and thereby returning us to status-quo.

In view of the above, the entire members of the Lagos State Chapter of the Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) condemn in the strongest term and in solidarity will all affected citizens and their families, the barbaric attacks on innocent Nigerians, heinous abduction and gruesome butchery of Nigerians. If a general cannot combat an insurgence within the ambient of the existing system of government, then, the system is not only faulty but needs complete overhauling. We need no intervention of an oracle to ascertain the veracity that this present capitalist system of government has failed woefully. 

The Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) intends to re-organize and stabilize the existing security structure in Nigeria by providing all necessary arms and ammunitions capable of restraining and paralyzing all existing insurgence in the country in line with democratic controlled community defence. Our military personnel and other security agents would be adequately remunerated so that they would be willing and ready to make lots of sacrifice for our dear Nation. Our research has revealed that technologically aided aerial surveillance, controlled aerial bombardment with full artillery and standby reinforcement ready to advance as soon as they receive signal from troubled communities with immediate effect are more than enough to suppress insurgence in the country. Also, there must be adequate provision for dialogue and reconciliation where necessary. 

Having guaranteed the security of the state, we will provide free education for all citizens, build more schools, upgrade existing government schools, create more employment for our teeming population by allowing the working class to take active role in the deciding and key sectors of economy while we re-distribute the wealth generated from the state equally among the citizens without bias or sentiment. Within two years, our refineries will work at optimal capacity. We will introduce functional rail system within an integrated transport system across major cities in the country, Ajaokuta steel company would be in operation within three years. Salaries and allowances of political office holders would be reduced to that of civil servants so that more roads could be constructed, ultramodern hospitals would be provided, stable and affordable power supply would be generated for the consumption of all. Small and medium entrepreneurs will spring up at every nook and cranny of the country thereby reducing unemployment to the barest minimum. This will go a long way in boosting our economy beyond limit. Therefore, religious bigotry, ethnic jingoism, political thuggery and massive wealth aggrandizement would be eradicated thereby resulting into peaceful and enviable society.

We call on well-meaning Nigerians home and abroad to support us and join us in order to jointly build the SPN as a formidable alternative to rescue Nigeria from collapse. 

Society dies little by little when those who know the illness fold their arms waiting for conventional solution. Join The Socialist Party of Nigeria today and rescue our country. Thank you.

Com. M.K Shoyombo
SPN Publicity Secretary, Lagos State

SPN Oyo Writes OYSIEC over LG Election Timetable and Delination of Wards

March 1, 2018
The Chairman,
Oyo State Independent Electoral Commission, OYSIEC,
Secretariat Road,
Ibadan, Oyo State

Dear Sir


We of the Socialist Party of Nigeria, SPN, Oyo State Chapter write to officially bring to the notice of your esteemed office our observation and concern over the election time table and a related document titled “wards delineation” which we received from the Oyo State Independent Electoral Commission, OYSIEC on Wednesday, February 22, 2018.

It will be recalled that state leadership of SPN and some OYSIEC commissioners had a meeting on Wednesday, February 21st, 2018. This was with a view of resolving all of the areas of conflicts between the party and commission, that formed the background to the peaceful protest organised by SPN members to the OYSIEC office on Monday, February 19, 2018 against perceived exclusion of the party by the OYSIEC from the preparatory process for the election into 33 Local Government Area, LGAs and 35 local council development areas LCDA scheduled to hold on May 12, 2018.

To us in SPN, the meeting was no doubt a success, in the sense that it provided the party and commission an avenue to agree on definite channel of communication the absence of which was largely responsible for earlier conflict between the party and the commission. The meeting also offered the leadership of SPN an opportunity to receive on behalf of the party the official copy of the timetable for the scheduled LGA/LCDA election as well as a related document titled the “Delineation of Wards.”

However, having gone through these documents, we found out some grey areas that deserve an urgent and immediate attention of the commission; otherwise the commission will be faced with the risk of conducting election that will be far from being credible, free and fair!

According to the election timetable, the deadline for the collection and submission of personal data form for candidates by political parties is slated for Saturday February 24, 2018 and Sunday, February 25, 2018 respectively. To us in SPN, this aspect gives room for a doubt over the reliability of this timetable to guild us through the electioneering process due to its inconsistency with the prevailing objective realities on ground. As of Tuesday, February 27, 2018, virtually all political parties in the state with high chances to participate in the scheduled LGA election are yet to conduct their respective primary elections which was scheduled in the same timetable to be completed between Monday, 5th and Wednesday 23 February, 2018. Not even the ruling APC, which recently made a public announcement over its decision to postpone the date to conduct it primary elections indefinitely.

This therefore, implies that as things stand today, none of the political parties in the state can be said to have complied with the aspect of the timetable that concern both the collection and submission of the personal data form for candidates by political parties. This therefore underscores the position of our party that unless representatives of political parties are brought together to work out an election timetable that will be acceptable to all, the chances for the scheduled elections to be free, fair and credible will be so slim!

The continuous failure of OYSIEC to comprehensively delineate wards in the LGA and LCDA is quite obvious in the documented titled delineation of wards which was handed over to us officially by the commission. This document is so abstract in the sense that it only shows the number of wards in each of the LGAs and LCDAs without any description of the specific areas and boundaries of each ward. Except we have a detailed delineation, it will be difficult for candidates in the Election to understand the boundaries when canvassing for the electable positions they are interested to contest for.

This is why we of the Socialist Party of Nigeria strongly feel that issues around the delineation of wards and local government should have been first and foremost sorted out even before the release of any timetable for the election itself. SPN is of the opinion that the release of the time table while still battling with issues around delineation of wards is like putting the "cart before the horse"!

Going by this background, it is obvious that the foundation for the preparation for the long awaited local government election is far from being capable to usher in an election that will be credible. As much as SPN is in agreement that May 12 slated for the LG poll should be sacrosanct, we hereby urge OYSIEC to declare the existing election timetable null and void while also reiterate that OYSIEC should urgently convene a fresh meeting of all the existing political parties in the state to arrive at a progressive way out of this situation capable of undermining the competence of OYSEIC to conduct a credible, free and fair Local government election. This is with a view to create an avenue for a discussion and debate over all of the issues around the election towards  arriving  at an electoral time table that will enjoy the input and consent of all political parties in the state. Lastly, OYOSIEC must ensure that all issues around the delineation of wards are resolved before a fresh election timetable is released

Again, except the OYSIEC conducts the proposed local government elections in Oyo State in this kind of democratic manner, the planned elections across LGA and LCDA in the state end up being a farce!


(1) OYSIEC should openly declare the existing election time table null and void
(2) OYSIEC should convene a fresh meeting of all the existing political parties in the state towards arriving at a fresh election time table
(3) OYSIEC must resolve all issues around the delineation of wards before a new election time table is released
Conclusively, the SPN will be glad if all of these critical areas pointed out are addressed and attended to!

Yours sincerely,                                                                       

 Abiodun Bamigboye (Abbey Trotsky)
Secretary, SPN, Oyo State Chapter