Indications have emerged that the Ondo State House of Assembly has set the stage to impeach and remove the Deputy Governor, Agboola Ajayi, following his defection from the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), where he has been cleared to contest the July 22 governorship primary.
The state legislature took the unprecedented step of placing a newspaper advertisement signed by the Clerk of the House, Bode Adeyelu, and the Speaker, Bamidele Oleyelogun, directing all members to resume from their recess today Monday, July 6, 2020 for legislative duties. But reacting to the matter, the Chief Press Secretary to the Deputy Governor, Babatope Okeowo, said there was no anxiety in the camp of the deputy governor. “The House has the right to hold its session any time the leadership deemed fit. The only suspicion about it is the placement of advertisement recalling members from the recess, which had never happened. Moreover, there are several platforms available for communication among members and the leadership of the House.
“Apart from this, the resumption of the House may not be ordinary for now in view of the Covid-19 pandemic which had entered community transmission level. It is known to all that many of the legislators related with the governor in recent time and according to information none of them has gone through the Covid-19 test to determine their status. So the directive for the resumption and the mode of communication is very unusual. But at the level of the deputy governor, there is no anxiety,” he said.
House spokesman, Hon. Gbenga Omole, was not available for comment. Meanwhile, after weeks of speculations, the Secretary to the Ondo State Government (SSG), Ifedayo Abegunde (Abena), has resigned from the government of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu. In the past few weeks, Abegunde was rumored to be working with the state Deputy Governor Agboola Ajayi on how to realize his governorship ambition on the platform of the PDP. Abegunde personally confirmed the news, saying his next line of action politically would be communicated within the next 24 hours.
In another development, Dr. Nat Adojutelegan, one of the aspirants for the Ondo State Governorship election under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has called on the leadership of the party to employ direct primaries in determining its candidate.
Adojutelegan, briefing newsmen in Abuja on Monday after submitting his expression of interest and nomination forms, recalled the 2018 APC Congress in Ondo was fraught with irregularities. He said that the fallout of the congress which produced parallel executive committees was still pending in court and as such, a repeat should be averted by employing direct primaries.
“I can’t end this press conference without addressing the raging controversy regarding the mode of election to adopt in the forthcoming primary elections. In these circumstances 11 of the 12 aspirants contesting in the primary election prefer Direct Primary mode of election. I respectfully ask the national leadership of the party to adopt direct Primary for the following reasons: Avoid a deepening inter-crisis; Unify all the members of the party in readiness and preparation for the governorship election; Avoid excluding and disenfranchising a majority of the members of the party. Create a level playing field for the aspirants; Catalyst to winning the governorship election by enabling emergence of the most popular aspirant as the party’s candidate; Avoid the Zamfara’s experience,” he said.
The governorship candidate assured that his bid was aimed at achieving realistic missions of bringing about an egalitarian state, giving the people a sense of belonging and sustainable livelihoods as well as high living standards. He assured that he planned to in the short term; change the historical narrative by putting people first and initiating policies for the betterment of the people.
He stressed that apart from people oriented policies, he would focus on enabling people have sensible livelihood, meet the needs at the local level and lead a transparent and accountable government. “On Monday 29th June 2020, I collected the expression of interest and nomination form at the national secretariat of the APC. I have submitted the forms.
“My campaign tour will commence fully on the 9th of July 2020 after the screening exercise, I will be visiting wards across the state to solicit support from members of the party. “I will create an enabling environment for industrialization of the state to create jobs and wealth. I will enable the youth to acquire relevant skills required to develop our local economy. I will review School fees of tertiary institutions,” he added. (NAN)