A group, the Concerned Stakeholders of the National Theatre, has described the claims made by the former General Manager of the National Theatre, Prof. Sunday Ododo, misleading and untrue.
It would be recalled that Ododo in his farewell speech, alluded to have revitalised and injected fresh perspectives and growth into the parastatal.
He also claimed to have established an unparalleled industrial harmony within the institution that allowed staff to contribute to the vibrancy of the cultural heritage and output.
Debunking the claims, Spokesman of the group, Comrade Lekan Ayinde alleged that the former GM truly left a fresh perspective of workers’ intimidation and arrest of the Executive Chairman and Secretary of RATTAWU and the running of the affairs of the edifice as a sole proprietorship.
Ayinde said that in the 45years of the artistic edifice, no General Manager has ever arrested, persecuted or intimidated any worker using the police or detained union leaders at the police station like Ododo.
He alleged that under the leadership of Ododo the Chairman and Secretary of RATTAWU, National Theatre chapter were arrested and detained for petitioning the Ministry of Arts, Culture and Creative Economy about unhealthy work environment at the parastatal and the call for his suspension.
He said, “Truly Prof Sunday Ododo has recorded many firsts during his tenure as the GM of the national Theatre. But this was in the negative. While the Federal Government is looking for a way to source for fund to finance capital projects, massive looting of funds and artefacts are being perpetrated at the National Theatre.
“These facts are established by series of petitions before the ICPC and DSS against the former GM. The auditor-general report is another lead to unravelling the financial puzzle the edifice was thrown into.
“So claiming to be an architect of a revitalised National Theatre was a misnomer because he wasn’t a party to the signing of the rehabilitation neither was he a signatory to all the transactions that led to the reconstruction works.
“Rather he benefitted from the deal through the disposal of movable items and only paid paltry sum to the TSA. He has no hands in the FG’s plan to revitalise and rehabilitate the National Theatre. The deal was between the Bankers’ Committee and the Federal Government.”
Ayinde called on the ICPC, DSS and the Ministry of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy under the leadership of Barr Hannatu Musawa to investigate all the allegations levelled against the former GM with a view to unravelling the truth.