By Rotimi Ojomoyela
ADO-EKITI—GOVERNOR Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State, yesterday, flayed security agencies in the state over their role in the impeachment of Assembly Speaker, Mr. Kola Oluwawole, describing it as regrettable.
Speaking through his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Idowu Adelusi, the governor said he had done his best to reposition the state even as he urged the legislative arm of the government to put the interest of Ekiti first.
Fayose said: “Above all, with Kola Oluwawole or Ebenezer Alagbada as speaker, I enjoin them to cooperate with the incoming administration in the overall interest of our people.”
Why Speaker, Deputy were removed
The former speaker, Oluwawole and his Deputy, Mr. Sina Animasaun, were removed by the lawmakers, yesterday.
While the lawmakers subsequently appointed Mr. Ebenezer Alagbada, representing Ise/Orun constituency as the new speaker and they also reinstated the former Deputy Speaker, Mr. Segun Adewumi to his former position.
In the shake-up, the former Minority Leader, Mr. Gboyega Aribisogan, was elected the new leader of Business.
The lawmakers, made up of three APC and 11 PDP lawmakers also suspended 12 other lawmakers, including Oluwawole, for 125 legislative days.
Those suspended were: Messrs Oluwawole, Animasahun, Omotoso Samuel, Wale Onigiobi, Wale Ayeni, Dare PelemÍ, Jeje Samuel, Akinleye Dayo, Fajemilehin Ayodele, Fasanmi Temitope,Tunji Akinyele and Sanya Aladeyelu.
At the sitting, Mr. Sunday Akinniyi, an APC lawmaker, was elected Minority Leader; Fajana Ojo-Ade, Deputy Leader, Hon Cecilia Dada, Chief Whip, and Hon Musa Arogundade, Deputy Chief Whip.
Addressing the newsmen after the plenary, Aribisogan, the new Leader of Business, said Oluwawole and other PDP lawmakers were suspended over alleged complicity in the disappearance of N60 million in the House.
Aribisogan said: “We held a plenary session which was a follow up to the parliamentary we held on Wednesday and we carried out changes in the leadership of the House.
“When the PDP members were busy doing the presidential primary in Port Harcourt, we were busy here strategizing on how best to make Ekiti governable for the incoming government, Dr Kayode Fayemi.
“14 members sat to carry out these changes out of which 11 are addressing this press conference. We have 26 members in this Assembly, and we needed just nine to form a quorum.
“Our actions were guided by the standing orders of this Assembly and we didn’t deviate from them, so the quorum was formed and our actions were legal and constitutional.”
I won’t betray you —Alagbada, new speaker
The new Speaker, Hon Alagbada, in his acceptance speech, appreciated the lawmakers for reposing confidence in him, saying he won’t betray their confidence and trust.
Alagbada said: “You are aware that the House has, since inception of the present administration, become the property of the governor rather than an arm of government. Ekiti State is yearning for a purposeful legislature that would be truly committed and independent to discharge its constitutional duties.
“We will no longer allow a situation whereby legislature will be pocketed or caged by the executive. Let me assure all and sundry that we will cooperate with the governor-elect, Dr Kayode Fayemi to move Ekiti forward.”
Ex Speaker kicks
But the suspended speaker, Oluwawole, has described his purported impeachment as a rape on democracy and a descent to lowest level of lawlessness and illegality.
In a statement by his Special Assistant on Media, Stephen Gbadamosi, Oluwawole said: “This is bizarre in a democracy. This is the height of illegality and it can never stand. As the Speaker of the House, I supervised over the last adjournment of the House, which was carried out according to laws and laid down rules.
“I retain the power to reconvene the House and I have not done that yet. How then can some people say the House sat? This is totally illegal. The role of the police in this siege is clear. It was enemies of democracy that organised the purported sitting of the Ekiti State House of Assembly as the House has not been reconvened by its Speaker.”