By Victor Ahiuma-Young
ACTION Congress, AC, yesterday dismissed reports alleging that immediate past governor of Lagos state, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and the state lawmakers sponsored news reports accusing Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State of financial recklessness.
The partyalso accused percieved fifth columnists of trying to penetrate the ranks of party members toÂ instigate crises and cause disaffection in order to destabilise AC in Lagos State, as well as impede the tremendous progress made in the state over the last decade.
A statement by ACâ€™s Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, argued that it was obviously illogical for Asiwaju to be the one behind an advert that sought to damage his own reputation and that of the party he had expended so much time, energy, intellect and resources to build.
The statement read in part: â€œTo our surprise, the newspaper insinuated that a two-page advert, published in The Punch of January 28, making allegations of financial recklessness against Governor Fashola was sponsored by Asiwaju Tinubu.
â€œThe AC finds this allegation absolutely baseless and irresponsible because the advert in question, placed by a faceless group, made reckless allegations, not only against Governor Fashola but also attempted to tarnish the image of Asiwaju Tinubu, members of the Lagos State House of Assembly and indeed the members of our great partyÂ in Lagos State as a whole.
â€œIt is obviously illogical for Asiwaju to be the one behind an advert that seeks to damage his own reputation and that of the party he has expended so much time, energy, intellect and resources to build.
â€œThe This Day story in question is only a continuation of recent media reports of alleged crisis between Asiwaju Tinubu and Governor Fashola.
â€œBoth respected leaders of our party have issued widely publicised statements debunking these reports of any disagreement between them and as a party, we affirm that the Lagos State chapter of our party remains harmonious, solid and utterly impregnable to mischievous political opportunists.
â€œIt is only natural that fifth columnists will try to penetrate the ranks of our party, instigate crises, and cause disaffection in order to destabilise the AC in Lagos State, as well as impede the tremendous progress made in the state over the last decade.â€
â€œAs far as we are concerned, the allegations levelled against Fashola, Tinubu and the Lagos legislators in the advert in question remain baseless and unproven.â€
Without prejudice to the constitutional responsibility of the House of Assembly to investigate any allegations against public officers, we affirm our faith and confidence in the integrity and credibility of the affected persons. Equally false and ridiculous is the claim in the This Day report that the House of Assembly has commenced impeachment proceedings against Governor Fashola, based on the published allegations. Can the Assembly commence impeachment processes against themselves since allegations were also made against them in the advert?
Constitutionally, it needs one-third of the members of the House to sign a statement, starting the process.Â For the Lagos House, the number should be 14 members.Â How then can a 6-member administrative panel start â€œimpeachmentâ€ proceedings?Â It is obvious that no such thing has been commenced in Lagos State.
We all know that impeachment of a chief executive can only commence after a petition has been formally received by the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly.Â All we have now are unproven allegations by a largely unknown group to which the House has only understandably responded in the interest of its credibility, as well as that of our party.â€