The opposition Peoples Democratic Party in Ondo State, on Thursday, again expressed worry about what it described as the long absence of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu from the state over ill health.
The PDP said though it was not a crime to be ill, Akeredolu’s handlers had allegedly mismanaged the situation.
It, therefore, called on the state’s House of Assembly to immediately raise a medical panel to ascertain the governor’s health status while the lawmakers should also begin a process for his impeachment.
The PDP, which made the call in a statement by its Publicity Secretary, Kennedy Peretei, alleged that Akeredolu had committed an impeachable offence for staying out of the state for over six years and thereby leaving the state on autopilot for almost six months and grounding all activities of the government.
“The time has come for the Ondo State House of Assembly to immediately begin the impeachment process of Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) for violation of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended.
“Unfortunately, rather than tell the citizens the truth, most of Akeredolu’s handlers have resorted to insulting the sensibilities of the people by making a public show of their ignorance. The handling of Akeredolu’s condition by his aides has robbed the governor of public sympathy.
“The Constitution envisaged that it is possible for a state governor to be ill or incapacitated as is the case with Akeredolu now and therefore made safeguards. Section 193(2) states expressly that ‘the governor of a state shall hold regular meetings with the deputy governor and all commissioners of the government of the state for the purposes of determining the general direction of policies of the state’ amongst other provisions.
“When was the last time Akeredolu held a State Executive Council meeting? It is not a crime to be ill, but that will not be the reason an entire state must be brought to its knees. The PDP Ondo State chapter calls on the State Assembly to invoke section 189(1) to cause a medical panel to be instituted to ascertain Akeredolu’s medical status and do the needful in the interest of the people of the state.
“Our party wishes to urge the governor’s aides to stop ridiculing themselves by defending the indefensible and standing logic on its head,” the PDP said.
But in a swift reaction, the Majority Leader of the Ondo State House of Assembly, Mr Oluwole Ogunmolasuyi, dismissed the impeachment call, saying the opposition lacks the knowledge of what constitutes impeachable offences against a governor.
Ogunmolasuyi said Akeredolu had not failed in his duties as governor and had not breached any aspect of the constitution.
“The Assembly has noted ongoing developmental projects across the state including prompt payment of salaries and clearing of backlog of salary arrears.
“The governor is doing his duties. Everything is going on well in the state. We have met with the governor and all those who want to meet with him. If the governor is not doing what he is supposed to do, we will question him. He has signed all bills brought before him. What we know is that the PDP is a dead party. They cannot stipulate the duties of the governor.”