A group under the aegis of Ondo State Conscience Movement (OCM) has urged the Ondo State House of Assembly not to use their hallowed chamber be tained with political witch-hunts as they were about to begin the impeachment process of the Ondo State Deputy Governor, Mr. Lucky Aiyedatiwa.
The group said the discord between the State Governor, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu who recently returned from a protracted sick-leave abroad, and the alleged gubernatorial ambitions of the deputy governor, should not be allowed to overshadow the pursuit of justice and adherence to constitutional principles.
In a statement signed by the Chairman of the group, Shalom Olaseni on Tuesday added that the impeachment process must follow strict accordance with the rule of law and the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The statement read in part: “We the Ondo State Conscience Movement (OCM), representing the voices of concerned citizens and deeply committed to upholding the principles of democracy and the rule of law in Ondo State and beyond, deem it apropos in the interest of justice and posterity to cause the immediate release of this statement detailing our position on the political drama and debacle that has engulfed our dear State in recent times.
“We insist that the grounds for the impeachment of the Deputy Governor of Ondo State which is reportedly being pursued in earnest by the Ondo State House of Assembly must in itself be unimpeachable and firmly rooted in identifiable ultra vires actions that the constitution explicitly outlines as legitimate grounds for impeachment.
“It is our unwavering belief that the legislature should not allow its hallowed floor to be tainted with political witch-hunts or targeted vendettas, as has been rumoured in various quarters in the state.
“That the powers vested in the legislature must be wielded with utmost consciousness of their representative capacity on behalf of the good people of Ondo State, rather than being exercised flimsily and on a whim. We further want to urge and impress on the Honourable Members of the State House of Assembly to consider that the speed, focus, and determination with which the impeachment agenda is being pursued could have been more effectively channelled toward addressing the genuine issues of governance, which would better serve the ambitions of our state and its people.”
Olaseni noted that the discord between the governor and his deputy would slow down the progress of development and governance in the state, stressing that the lacuna it is generating is of no benefit to the people of the state.
He said: “It is undeniable that in recent times, the governance of our beloved Ondo State has suffered a detrimental void since the onset of the ongoing rift within the corridors of power. This neglect has had a devastating impact on the lives and livelihoods of our citizens. We condemn the lacuna in governance as needless and avoidable, and therefore call for an immediate refocus on matters that directly affect our state’s fortunes and the wellbeing of its people.
“We maintain that it is unproductive and anathema to the growth of Ondo State for those vested with political power to abandon the engineering of development in the state to pursue personal vendettas and scores. We want to make it abundantly clear that the good people of Ondo State are the wiser for it and will not give their imprimatur and legitimacy to actions that stem from sinister motives aimed at settling personal political scores to the detriment of the state and its people.
“We therfore caution against the re-tooling of the Ondo State House of Assembly as the enforcement arm of executive whims, and assert that any such actions will be fought and resisted by the people.
“As a group, we take the opportunity of this statement to demand increased accountability in government and a return to prioritizing issues that have a direct impact on our state’s prosperity and the welfare of our people. We reiterate our call for the full and unadulterated respect of our constitution and the assurance that constitutional powers will not be bent to serve narrow interests within our state.”