Ondo Chief Judge rejects Speaker’s request to probe Akeredolu’s deputy

Ondo-CJ-Olanrewaju-Akeredolu.
TJ
Tochi Juliet

The Chief Judge of Ondo State, Justice Olarenwaju Akeredolu, has refused the request by the Ondo State House of Assembly to set up a probe panel against the Deputy Governor, Agboola Ajayi over allegations of gross misconduct.

Speaker of the Ondo Assembly, Bamidele Oleyelogun, had on Thursday written to the Chief Judge to set up a seven-man panel to investigate Ajayi with the aim to impeach him from office. 

According to the Chief Judge, in reply to the request of the Speaker, Bamidele Oleyelogun, the Assembly did not meet the constitutional requirements needed to impeach the embattled deputy governor.

Only 14 out of the 26 members of the Assembly signed the impeachment notice, with nine members dissociating themselves from the impeachment plot.

The nine members have also written a letter to the Chief Judge of the state, Justice Akeredolu, dissociating themselves from the ongoing plans to impeach the Ondo deputy governor of the state.

The nine lawmakers are Iroju Ogundeji, Jamiu Maito, Raaheed Elegbeleye, Tomide Akinribido, Samuel Ademola, Favour Semilore, Festus Akingbaso, Williams Adekunle, and Success Torhukerhijo.

The Chief Judge relied on this to conclude that the Assembly failed to form the two-thirds majority required to impeach the deputy governor.

“Kindly be informed that nine under-listed elected Honourable members of Ondo State House of Assembly have duly dissociated ourselves from the ongoing impeachment process of the Deputy Governor of Ondo State, H.E.( Hon.) Agboola Alfred Ajayi in a letter dated 7th July 2020 to the Clerk and the Clerk and the Rt. Hon. Speaker of the Ondo State House of Assembly, herewith attached,” the letter read.

"We want to state and confirm to your right office that we maintain our stand by dissociating ourselves from the impeachment process. We are not in support of the impeachment based on our personal conviction.

We rest assured that your Lordship will uphold Section 188 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended), particularly Section 188 (3) (4) (5) – (11).

It is equally worthy of note that the total membership of Ondo state House of Assembly is 26 in which 2/3 is 18, and this remains the constitutionally required number irrespective of any arbitrary suspension.

We are writing to call your attention to the fact that all or some of us who are signatories to this letter may be suspended in order to circumvent the provision of the constitution of Nigeria, which we all swore to uphold and protect, including your honourable Lordship, as this will be contrary to the laws of the land.”

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