From Oluseye Ojo, Ibadan
A new twist has been introduced to the impeachment move initiated by the Oyo State House of Assembly against the Deputy Governor, Rauf Olaniyan, as he has sued the lawmakers with a view to stalling the process.
The case came up before Justice Ladiran Akintola at High Court 7, Ring Road, Ibadan, yesterday, and has been adjourned till today. The deputy governor was represented in court by his counsel, Afolabi Fashanu.
The court ordered that the Speaker Adebo Ogundoyin and the clerk be put on notice about the litigation.
The impeachment move was initiated after deputy governor, a retired permanent secretary, dumped the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state for the All Progressives Congress (APC) as a result of purported frosty relationship between him and Governor Seyi Makinde.
The letter that initiated the impeachment move was dated June 9 and received same day in the office of the speaker. It was entitled: ‘Petition and notice of allegations of Deputy Governor of Oyo State, Rauf Olaniyan’.
The letter surfaced barely two weeks after Olaniyan’s defection. In the petition read during plenary, the 24 lawmakers levelled five allegations bordering on gross misconduct, abuse of office, financial recklessness, abandonment of office and official duty, and insubordination and other offences.
Ogundoyin, in his reaction after the letter was read, had noted that the petition met the two-third requirements to initiate the impeachment process against the deputy governor.
He said the lawmakers would give the deputy governor a seven-day ‘grace period’ to respond to the allegations, which would end on Wednesday, June 22.
He, however, warned that failure to respond within seven days could lead to the commencement of impeachment move.
The deputy governor responded to the allegations within four days after receipt of the query from the lawmakers. His response was said to have been sent by his counsel.
The Assembly spokesman, Kazeem Olayanju, confirmed that the Assembly had received the response when he featured on a radio programme in Ibadan on Thursday, June 23, adding that Olaniyan’s response would be read at plenary that would hold today, before the litigation came up.