Bamigbola Gbolagunte, Akure
The face-off between Governor Rotimi Akeredolu and his estranged deputy, Agboola Ajayi, worsened yesterday when the latter demanded that the former should hand over governance to him given that he is incapacitated. He therefore gave the governor 21 days ultimatum to comply with the provisions of the Constitution.
In a statement signed by the Media Adviser to the Deputy Governor, Allen Sowore, Ajayi took a swipe at the governor for not living up to his status as a Senior Advocate of Nigeria.
His words: “Ordinarily, one expects Mr. Governor to bring to bear on governance his background as a lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, (SAN). But it is rather surprising and worrisome that the governor has chosen the part of perversion of justice, by allowing his close aides to go astray in a matter of constitutionality.
“Section 190(2) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) is apposite in the prevailing constitutional aberration in Ondo State. On our part, we will continue to pray fervently for Mr. Governor’s quickest recovery.
“However, it should be noted that Mr Governor is at liberty to handover or not within 21 days after which the constitution becomes operational. Ostensibly, the refusal and failure of Mr Governor to handover the running of government to his deputy while he is temporarily incapacitated in self-isolation underscores his absolute disregard for our nation’s supreme document, the 1999 Constitution (as amended) as well as the tenets of rule of law.
“The governor’s position is a spite on the Ondo State people and a direct assault on the provisions of the Constitution which he swore to uphold.
“Governor Akeredolu’s deliberate mounting of obstacles to smooth running of government machinery while he’s in self-isolation as a result of the fact that he has tested positive for the COVID-19 highlights the hypocritical nature of Ondo State government’s war against the ravaging pandemic,” Sowore added.
Recall that Governor Akeredolu had on Tuesday, personally disclosed that he had tested positive for COVID-19 but allayed the fears of the people of the state, especially his supporters that he was fit to work from self isolation.
Following this development, some supporters of the deputy governor commenced a social media pressure on Governor Akeredolu to hand over to Ajayi, who had penultimate week defected to the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to run for the governorship ticket of the party while insisting that he would not resign his position as deputy governor.