By Levinus Nwabughiogu
ABUJA– Outgoing governor of Ondo state, Olusegun Mimiko has faulted the impeachment of the Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Mrs Jumoke Akindele, saying that it was illegal.
He said that it was unfortunate that the members carried out the act even when the Speaker had opted to leave the office to give currency to the emerging power sharing structure in the State.
Mimiko however stated that 13 out of the 26-member House lacked the constitutional power to impeach the Speaker as they did not constitute a two-third majority.
The governor spoke to State House correspondents after a private meeting with the Acting President Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja on Tuesday.
He added that his mission to the Villa was not to discuss the crisis in the state assembly, revealing that elder statesmen in the state were already handling the matter.
Mimiko also stated that the crisis was not directly related to his attempt to present the state 2017 budget.
“The matter is being looked into. It’s an internal matter within the house and I think some elders statesmen and leaders in the state are looking at how they can help them to get over the crisis,” he said, adding: “I don’t think it’s directly related. There is nothing sacrosanct about the method of presenting budget if you know what am talking about.
“I think it’s just about changing leadership structure in the house and all of that.
“The governor now is from the northern central district and the deputy governor is from the southern central district and then, the speaker is from the south.
“There are those who feel that she should step aside so that they can get someone from the central senatorial district. I think that has been sorted out.
“I believe that the speaker should come from the central senatorial district but the issue is the method.
“The sitting speaker now has made it abundantly clear that she is ready to step aside, she is ready to resign her position.
“But the group that purportedly impeached her, not even a simple majority can impeach the speaker, it has to be two thirds. That is to tell you about the fact that 13 out of 26 members of the house don’t have constitutional or legal empowerment to impeach the speaker.
“But as I speak with you now, she is ready to step aside any time once the house is properly constituted.”
The governor also disclosed that he discussed with Osinbajo on the possibility of him coming to the state to commission some projects.
“My mission to the acting President is to brief him about what we are doing to exit. There are some projects that if he can spare the time, we would like him to come to the state to commission some of them,” he said.