Shina Abubakar – Osogbo
Osun State House of Assembly on Tuesday declared as null and void the purported impeachment of the Chairman of Osogbo South Local Council Development Authority (LCDA), Akeem Olaoye.
The lawmakers said the procedure was faulty.
The House also ordered the council chairman to return to his office and lifted the suspension slammed on the councilors.
The lawmakers urged the warring parties to embrace peace. and work together in the interest of the people.
The councillors had last month impeached the chairman over alleged gross misconduct and financial misappropriation leading to the suspension of elected officials in the council by the House of Assembly to check the breakdown of law and order.
The Speaker of the House, Timothy Owoeye, who received the report of the House Committee on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs and Judiciary Legal Matters, Public petitions and Human Rights at the plenary, ordered the impeached council chief and the councillors to resume duties.
He said the councillors erred by refusing to follow the procedure of impeachment as contained in section 19 (a) (b) (c) and (d) of the State of Osun Local Government Areas (Creation and Administration) Law, 2015 for the removal of the Chairman.
He declared that it would be absurd for the Assembly to act on a faulty procedure, saying the parliamentarians committed a procedural error by completing the impeachment process before forwarding it to the Assembly.
The speaker, however, noted that the councillors have the power to remove/impeach the chairman but such power could not be exercised without following the necessary procedure.
Owoeye said: “The present resolution of the Assembly has not in any way vindicated the two parties and the earlier order asking them not parade themselves within the precinct of the council was borne out of the need for peace to reign.
“The parliamentarians have the right to remove or suspend any of the members but the normal process stipulated by the law of the land must be followed appropriately.
“It should be on record that the position of the law on the process of impeachment is clear. Parliamentarians should get themselves used to the law, this Assembly can’t fold her arms and watch impunity thrive.
“The House of Assembly under my watch will not hesitate to do the needful on any chairman found wanting if the procedure is right.”