Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Mr. Agboola Ajayi, has issued a 21-day ultimatum to Governor Rotimi Akeredolu to hand over power to him or the constitution would take its course.
Ajayi said Akeredolu, having contracted Covid-19 and currently receiving treatment in self-quarantine, cannot continue to leave vacuum in the state’s leadership.
Though the Governor had said he will continue to attend to files, noting that he is asymptomatic to the infection, his deputy insists the virus had rendered his estranged boss incapacitated, asking Akeredolu to let him run the affairs of the state, while he recuperates.
The New Diplomat earlier reported that Governor Akeredolu had on Friday vowed that he would not hand over to his Deputy in acting capacity.
Speaking through his Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mr. Donald Ojogo, Akeredolu said his Deputy was the greatest threat to his administration, noting he cannot risk handing over to someone who had betrayed him.
But the Deputy Governor while reacting to Ojogo’s verbal attack on him, said it was ignorance to proclaim that Governor Akeredolu would not hand over running of government to him because of political differences.
The Deputy Governor who spoke through his Media Adviser, Comrade Allen Sowore, said Section 190 (2) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) should take its course in this circumstance even as he prayed for Akeredolu’s quick recovery.
He said the Governor was at liberty to handover or not within 21 days after which the constitution becomes operational.
In his words: “Refusal and failure of Mr Governor to handover the running of government to his deputy while in self isolation and temporarily incapacitated underscore his absolute disregard for the rule of law; a spite on the people and a direct assault on the provisions of the constitution which he swore to uphold.
“Not only that, his deliberate obstacles to ensure that government continues to run while he’s in self isolation as a result of the fact that he has been tested positive for the COVID-19 puts lips service to his hypocratic war against the ravaging pandemic.
“Our candid advice is that the energy decipates to pull down the office and person of the deputy governor should be channelled towards resolving the lingering crisis in the health sector particularly, the current strike embarked on by medical practitioners in the state, in the middle of this pandemic. Nobody will take us seriously when doctors are on strike and yet we pretend to be fighting a pandemic. It will only indicates that we’re taking the health of the people for granted.
“The Deputy Governor has a track record of performance in the various offices he has held – first as supervisory Councillor, LG Chairman, Member of the National Assembly – where he served as the chairman of the House Committee on NDDC and even now as the Deputy Governor.
“Nothing serves as threat to good governance than the current nepotism and lackadaisical attitude towards the prioritisation of people’s welfare.
“It’s imperative to inform the general public that, Mr Governor and members of his kitchen cabinet have deliberately barred the Deputy Governor from all government activities as all the daily itinerary and work schedules released from Chief Of Protocols, have not allocated any function or duty to the person or office of the Deputy Governor in recent time.
“The Deputy Governor empathises with the good people of Ondo State, at this critical period of our statehood that Mr Governor has decided to personalise administration and governance of our dear state,” he said.