- Akirun of Ikirun, Aree of Iree and Owa of Igbajo’s appointments put on hold pending review
- Suspends OSIEC chair, members, swears-in SSG, COS; APC kicks
By Shina Abubakar
OSOGBO—Osun State Governor, Ademola Adeleke, had a handful, yesterday, in his first 24 hours in office.
He dethroned three monarchs enthroned recently by his predecessor, Adegboyega Oyetola; suspended the chairman and members of the Osun State Independent Electoral Commission, OSIEC; and sacked via executive orders, no fewer than 12,000 workers recently employed by Oyetola.
The new governor also ran into a disagreement with the state legislators, on the legality of his executive orders over laws passed by the House, even as hoodlums unleashed mayhem in Osogbo, attacking motor parks, forcing Governor Adeleke to warn the citizenry against violence.
Few weeks to the end of his tenure, Oyetola appointed several monarchs, including the Akirun of Ikirun, Oba Yinusa Akadiri; Aree of Iree, Oba Ademola Oluponle; and Owa of Igbajo, Oba Adegboyega Famodun.
The former governor also approved the appointment of 30 permanent secretaries in various ministries.
However, Adeleke in a statement by his spokesman, Olawale Rasheed, about 24 hours after his inauguration announced that the thrones of Akirun of Akirun, Aree of Iree and Owa of Igbajo remain unoccupied, pending the outcome of a Committee of Inquiry to review their appointments and subsequent installations.
According to the statement, the six Executive Orders issued by the governor, which border on reversal of monarchs’ appointments, appointment and placement of civil servants, employment and freezing of government accounts had been signed and took immediate effect.
“All appointments of traditional rulers made by Osun State Government after 17th July, 2022, are hereby ordered to be reviewed to ensure there was strict compliance with due process of chieftaincy declarations and native law, custom and tradition relating to such chieftaincies. In the case of Ikirun, Iree and Igbajo, to avoid further breakdown of law and order, the appointments of Akirun of Ikirun, Aree of Ire and Owa of Igbajo are hereby put on hold pending review. “Subsequently, the palaces of Akinrun of Ikirun, Aree of Iree and Owa of Igbajo should remain unoccupied, while security agencies are hereby ordered to take charge.
“All employment in the service of Osun State Government made in any capacity into any capacity in all the ministries, departments, agencies, commissions, boards and parastatals after July 17th, 2022 are hereby nullified,” he said.
The governor, according to the statement, also ordered the reversal of appointments into civil service and directed heads of government agencies to embark on staff audits immediately.
“All Heads of Ministries, Departments, Agencies, Commissions, Boards and Parastatals of Osun State Government are hereby directed to carry out an immediate staff audit of the actual number of government workers in their various Ministries, Departments, Agencies, Commissions, Boards and Parastatals, as at 17th July, 2022, and should file a report to the Office of the Chief of Staff to the Governor stating the full details and position/designation of each of the staff on the forwarded list, within seven working days from the date of this Executive Order using the attached Oath of Fidelity Template.
“All appointments in the service of Osun State Government made in any capacity into any capacity in all the Ministries, Departments, Agencies, Commissions, Boards and Parastatals after 17th July, 2022 be and are hereby reversed”, the statement read.
OSIEC chair, others suspended
Similarly, a statement issued by the Secretary to the State Government, Teslim Igbalaye, ordered the immediate suspension of the Osun State Independent Electoral Commission, OSIEC.
It reads: “The Executive Governor of Osun State, Senator Ademola Jackson Nurudeen Adeleke has directed the immediate suspension of the Chairman of the Osun State Independent Electoral Commission (OSIEC), Mr. Segun Oladitan, and the following members of the Commission- Mr. Yusuf Oyeniran, Alhaja Suibat Adubi, Prince Yinka Ajiboye, Mrs. Abosede Omibeku, Mr. Dosu Gidigbi and Mr. Wahab Adewoyin
“This suspension is sequel to several petitions bordering on financial impropriety, dereliction of duty, absenteeism and abuse of office against the said chairman and members of the commission.
“Pending the outcome of investigation into the allegations against the suspended chairman and members of the Commission, the secretary to the Commission shall hold fort in running the affairs of the commission.”
Meanwhile, Oluomo Sunday Akere, a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress, APC, and immediate past special adviser to former Governor Adegboyega Oyetola, described the Executive Orders as “childish and dictatorial.”
His words: “For the avoidance of doubt, the PDP-led administration should accept the reality that the immediate past Governor Oyetola had the mandate of Osun State people till midnight Saturday 26th of November, 2022 and any action taken in his capacity as governor is covered by the laws of the land.
“For a governor to dabble into traditional matters in this way amounts to nothing but abuse of power and brazen politicisation of traditional institutions.
“If there are complaints against the process of selecting any Oba (monarch), what the new administration should do is to encourage the complaints to seek redress in the court of law. Instructing security operatives to lock up palaces amounts to an invitation to chaos and breakdown of law and order. No governor has such a power and we will not hesitate to call the attention of elders in the state to this as a matter of urgency so as to call this government to order.
“We have had governments here before and none has ever taken this sort of dictatorial approach to issues of the state and traditional matters.”
Osun Assembly battle Adeleke over executive order, state anthem, slogan, crest
However, the Osun State House of Assembly has questioned the propriety of Governor Adeleke’s reversal of the state name from ‘State of the virtuous’ to ‘State of the Living Spring’ via Executive Order.
The House also stressed that rendition of the State Anthem and usage of its crest were creations of the law rather than a matter of choice.
Governor Adeleke replaced the state crest with the Nigerian coat of arms on the official pulpit of the state while the state anthem was recited at official functions on Monday.
The Assembly in a statement by the Chairman, Committee on Media and Publicity, Kunle Akande, said that the State of Osun Anthem, Crest and Flag Law 2012 was assented to on December 18, 2012 contained in Schedule I, Il, Ill, IV and V.
It reads: “The State of Osun House of Assembly having reviewed the inaugural speech of the Governor and the activities of the inauguration hereby resolves as follows; The usage of the State Anthem, Crest and Flag is an enactment of law and as such, its usage is a matter of law and not choice.
“The enactment ‘State of Osun Anthem, Crest and Flag Law, 2012’ assented to on the 18th of December, 2012 contained in Schedule I, Il, Ill, IV and V, which carefully details every component of this law is not in ambiguity.
“Schedule I is the State Anthem, Schedule II has to do with the State Crest, Schedule III is the symbolic significance of the elements in the Flag.
“Lastly, while we are aware of a court judgment in effect recognizing “Osun State”, the Assembly, pending the determination and exhaustion of all legal means, would not be drawn into this matter.
“However, the State shall and will continue to be described as the State of the Virtuous (Ipinle Omoluabi)”.
Workers in the service of Osun State Government, yesterday, received the new Governor on his first day in office amid pomp and ceremony at the state government secretariat entrance.
The governor was escorted by Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, chieftains and supporters from Imole House, Ogo-Oluwa area to the secretariat, thereby creating gridlock on the popular Osogbo-Gbongan road.
On approaching the Secretariat gate around 12:22pm, the waiting workers trooped to the roadside to catch a glance of the governor, who acknowledged cheers from workers through the sun roof of his SUV.
New SSG, Chief of Staff sworn in
The Governor, who had earlier sworn in the new Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Teslim Igbalaye and the Chief of Staff, Mr. Kasim Akinleye, described their appointment as reward for loyalty and readiness to serve the people.
He emphasised that his government will continue to reward loyalty and commitment to duty.
In his acceptance speech, the new secretary to the state government, Igbalaye, pledged to use his office to actualise the five cardinal programmes of Governnor Adeleke, and “called on those that will still be appointed by the governor to be prepared to work as a team towards moving Osun State forward.”
Residents of Osogbo, the Osun State capital were yesterday morning thrown into apprehension as hoodlums launched attacks on different motor parks across the town.
It was gathered that the attacks were launched simultaneously around 8am at Oke-Baale, Old-Garage, Ilesa Garage and Aregbe Garage against members of transport unions at the parks.
The parks were dominated by leaders loyal to the APC-led administration that just completed its tenure in the state.
Union members at Old-Garage were chased from the park towards the Ayetoro area of the town as sounds of gunshots pervaded the atmosphere.
One of the union members was lucky to have escaped at Ayetoro with matchet cuts and his car was set ablaze. Shop owners hurriedly closed their shops, while school gates were locked.
Attacks were also launched on union members at Oke-Baale, Aregbe garage, and Ilesa garage with a view to effecting a change of leadership which was said to have been resisted by the present leadership.
Governor warns against violence
Reacting to the development, Governor Adeleke, in a statement by Olawale Rasheed, directed union leaders to maintain peace across parks, warning against violence.
“The Governor, Senator Ademola Adeleke, has warned against violence among transport workers’ unions in the state, directing security agencies to maintain status quo across the motor parks.
“All union leaders and their supporters are hereby directed to remain calm and bring any grievances to the state government for resolution. Security agencies are consequently directly to maintain law and order,” the statement read.
Attacks inhuman, barbaric — Osun APC
Condemning the attacks by suspected thugs, the party in a statement by its Deputy Chairman, Sooko Taju Lawal, said: “The pre-meditated attacks in Osogbo, Ilesa, Ile-Ife, Iwo, Ila-Orangun, Ijebu-Jesa and other towns in the state which erupted immediately after the swearing in of the new PDP governor is an indication that the Governor Adeleke-led administration is not capable of constitutionally protecting the lives and property of the state.”
Lawal stated that the attacks on innocent members of the public by the PDP hoodlums were “inhuman, inconsiderate, barbaric and pungently oppressive.”
He disclosed that there are reports indicating that a number of people have been attacked and wounded with vehicles either burnt down and innocent people being harassed within the 48 hours of the existence of the PDP administration in the state, the development was an indication that the helmsman of the new administration is putting on a proverbial over-sized shoes.
The APC chieftain urged the police authorities and other security agencies in the state “to double up their efforts in discharging their statutory duties that have to do with the security of lives and property.”
“It was a pity that the Osun PDP and Governor Adeleke have chosen willful injection of hostility and violence as the hallmark of their new administration where innocent people were being needlessly attacked and harassed without any just cause.
“It was sad indeed that it was booming of guns and crying of attacks and molestation of members of the APC in the state that heralded the administration of Governor Adeleke’s administration.
“We enjoin the state House of Assembly to take a decisive step on how peace and sanity could be brought back to the hitherto one of the most peaceful states in Nigeria.”