A group in Ondo State has dragged the Ondo Assembly to the Senate, All Progress Congress, (APC) National Working Committee, to seek a probe of the State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu’s Health.
It called on the Governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde to help locate his colleague, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu allegedly kept somewhere in the city of Ibadan.
The group queried how a state is properly run without its government in place. Noting that the state is now left in the hands of power mongers, crass opportunists and those who have no good plans other than self-aggrandizement.
Speaking at a Press conference in Lagos on Monday, the leader of the group, Comrade Ologun Ayodeji condemned the absence of leadership and representation by the Ondo State hierarchy, demanding that henceforth, individuals so elected should be allowed to perform their democratic duties as provided for by the laws of the land.
He said; “It gives me pleasure to welcome you to this very important Address of the state of governance in Ondo State to set her continuously on the path of sustainable growth and social welfare to the people.
“It is visible to the blind and audible to the deaf, the state of comatose that Ondo State has found herself in recent times and regrettably so because she used to be the shining star of the west and a reference point in good governance and social welfare of the citizens.
“Governance has suddenly taken flight, leaving the people without leadership, direction or representation in all forms. The whirlwind is fast blowing across the state and taking along in its wake, distrust, deception and allegations.
“We shall take the issues one after the other and attempt to save Ondo state from marauders attempting to take the state to Golgotha.
“Emptiness of Executive Leadership across the state: As of the hour of holding this press briefing, there is no layer of governance at the executive level in the state and it is simply pathetic. The state has no Governor (None visibly so); The state has no Acting Governor (Not with the purported resumption of duty by Akeredolu); The State has a nonfunctional embattled deputy Governor; The state has no Local Government Chairmen nor councillors.
How does a state properly run without these organs in place? The state is now left in the hands of power mongers, crass opportunists and those who have no good plans other than self-aggrandizement.
Representation at the federal level: It is appalling and greatly so that Ondo State has been missing out on the affairs of the country and her management both for herself and her contribution to National development. For a state so blessed to have two Cabinet Ministers and an array of other appointees at the federal level from the state, the state has been missing out on key representation at national issues and is appalling.
“The state has not been part of the meetings of the Economic council in recent times ditto to the meetings of the governor with the president where key decisions are been taken nor has a presence at the meeting of the governor’s forum. This is not only disgraceful to Ondo State but it also shows the lacuna that exists in the realm of leadership in the state and regrettably so.
“We hold and dearly so, that the people of Ondo state are being shortchanged by the grip of a few unelected individuals who are taking advantage of the absence of the chief executive to prevent the wheel of governance from adequately spinning and allowing a smooth run of governance.
“We condemn the absence of leadership and representation by the Ondo State hierarchy and demand that henceforth, individuals so elected should be allowed to perform their democratic duties as provided for by the laws of the land. We are a people of pride and a voice. We can not be silenced to the advantage of a few.
“Governor Akeredolu, his health and the seat of the Governor: It has been thirty-one full days that Governor Akeredolu was “smuggled” into Nigeria after about initial four months of absence from not only his duty but the state.
“The purported return of the Governor established an aberration in history whereby state duties were transferred to the personal residence of the governor where he met with the House of Assembly members of the state and purportedly transmitted a letter notifying the assembly of his return and resumption of duty.
“Since the purported resumption of duty, not only has the Governor been seen in any public gathering, he has failed to carry out any state function even in the least, an address to the good people of the state. This leaves so much to be desired and further reinstates the fact that the Governor is unwell and his handlers are only marauding to give the people of the state the true status of the health of their governor.
“While we understand the fallibility of men and the sovereignty of God in matters of health, there is a duty to perform and only the physically fit as provided for by the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria can perform such duty and one the health of Akeredolu is been doubted.
“The secrecy by which the return and whereabouts of Governor Akeredolu has been shrouded calls for concern and suspicion and we dare say that we can’t afford to again have a repeat of the Yaradua scenario where the nation was in the dark of the living or otherwise of the then president. The life of a public office holder should be a transparent one and the people of the state deserve to know the true state of the health of Mr. Governor.
“The people and by the virtue of this press conference are demanding an address by the Governor to the people of the state to clear the controversy surrounding the state of his health and his capability to continue to lead the state.
“We state and unequivocally too, that should the Governor fail to address the state in a couple of days, we call for his resignation and in the alternative, the State House of Assembly is hereby been called upon to immediately constitute a medical board comprising qualified and unbiased professionals and experts who can provide an impartial assessment of the Governor’s health status and the findings of which should be made public as provided for by the law and put to rest any speculation and should the Governor be found incapable of the discharge of the duties of his office, the provision of the law in section ………. Should take its course.
“While we understand the importance of empathy during this time, it is equally important to uphold the principles of transparency and accountability in the governance of the state.
“We call on the Governor of Oyo state to help us locate his colleague governor said to be kept somewhere in the city of Ibadan or views
“The Purported impeachment process of the Deputy Governor and the Shenanigan of the State House of Assembly at this critical time in the history of Ondo State, what the state needs is healing, mutual trust and collective advancement of the delivery of good governance.
“It is however unfortunate that the only arm of government that should be fostering cohesion in the state is allowing herself to be used as a tool for destabilization and distraction by the purported impeachment plan of the erstwhile Acting Governor of the state. The state assembly should be addressing the myriads of problems confronting the state currently rather than pursuing the removal of the Deputy Governor.
“The whole drama and the distractions that came with it are simply political and also avoidable at this crucial time in the history of the state. The impeachment is at the expense of the peace, stability and the welfare of the people of the state and we condemn its process in its entirety. The issue of impeachment is not about accountability has being touted but a vendetta by a class of crass opportunists who have unfettered access to the commonwealth of the state.
“On our part, we have written to the National Assembly through her leadership, we have also written to the National Leadership of the Ruling APC as well as the President of the Country. We believe that these persons and organs have the capacity to call to. order the unnecessary storm that is waging. We acknowledge the committee put in place by the leadership of the APC as a party and we hope that given the personalities in the committee, common sense and utmostly peace shall prevail in the political water of the state.
“While the issue has been taken to court, we urge all the warring factions and the assembly to shield their swords and wait for the outcome of the judicial and political process. No one is above the law.
“As we persistently do, we again condemn the combative disposition of some politicians to advice that comes from concerned groups like ours. While we act in the best interest of the State, we have continued to encounter negative labelling of our intentions, especially by politicians who hide behind their ill-mannered cronies to insult and denigrate persons or groups of persons that dare to give counsel.
“We boldly affirm that we are critical stakeholders in the Ondo state project and cannot therefore be silenced. Politicians, or public office holders do not, by virtue of the opportunity they get to govern, become bigger than we citizens they are elected to serve, especially when we form ourselves into groups of this nature, through which we hold government officials accountable.
“As a group, we will remain committed to timely interventions like this, as promoters of good governance ideals and campaigners for change. Thank you and God bless Ondo State,” the statement added.