Ekiti: 7 lawmakers appoint protem Speaker, clear Fayose’s commissioner nominees… APC kicks

By The Citizen
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Seven Assembly members out of  26  members in the Ekiti State House of Assembly on Monday appointed a Protem speaker, Hon Dele Olugbemi  to preside over the seating of the House for the sole purpose of approving the list of commissioners recommended by the State Governor, Chief Ayo Fayose..

In a similar manner, the lawmakers gave Fayose the nod to appoint 12  Special Advisers and powers to constitute the transition committees for all the sixteen Local Government Areas of the State pending the time election will be held  at the third tier of Government.

Olugbemi,  who was one of the APC lawmakers that defected during Fayose's inauguration, became the Protem Speaker, following a  motion moved by minority leader  and the Leader of Government Business, Hon Samuel Ajibola , relying on Section 27 of the Standing Order.

The Assembly, comprising  26  members, has seven PDP Lawmakers following the defection of six APC Lawmakers to the ruling party, and 19 APC lawmakers.

However, the Speaker, Dr Adewale Omirin, has condemned the action of the seven PDP members of the state House of Assembly who convened Monday to approve the reconstitution of the local government caretaker committees and confirmed the commissioner-nominees of Governor Ayodele Fayose.

In a statement by Wole Olujobi, Special Adviser on Media to the Speaker which was obtained by our correspondent,  it said the seven PDP members also attempted to pass resolutions to ratify the many illegalities by the governor.

'We have heard of this reckless abuse of the constitution from other states like stories in the movies, but today before our very eyes, Governor Fayose provided seven members of PDP with 300 armed mobile policemen complete with armoured vehicles to conduct a plenary in the House of Assembly to approve the reconstitution of the council care-taker committees and confirmation of the commissioner-nominees without the 19 members of the All Progressives Congress in attendance.

'The prelude to today's event was well established, details of which were published in the media. The first attempt was when they planned to storm the House with thugs to attack APC members with the aid of security agents to change the leadership of the House.  The plan was foiled when it leaked. The second attempt was planned at Spotless Hotel owned by Governor Fayose where top members, both in Ekiti and outside Ekiti, met to plan what was carried out this morning. The governor did a follow-up with threats and coercion, including freezing the accounts of the Assembly, cutting of electricity supply from the Speaker's Lodge and stopping statutory votes for the Speaker's upkeep and Protocol,” he stated.

The Speaker said even though they did not succeed in changing the leadership of the House because they did not have the numbers,  seven members that fell short of the required nine to form a quorum sat to illegally approve the reconstitution of the local government care-taker committees in the state, including confirming the appointments of the commissioner-nominees who were never screened as required by the law.

He however  explained that before the House can sit if the Speaker is not available, by law,  majority members will write to the Speaker for the need to sit, saying that if approved, a Speaker Extempore is appointed to conduct the business of the day. Besides, Ekiti State House of Assembly does not sit for plenary on Mondays.

'Monday, according to the House Standing Rule, is for the Parliamentary where reports by members from their constituencies are reviewed and agenda set for the week sittings at the plenary. But against the rule of the House, seven PDP members led by armed policemen and thugs bundled the Clerk of the Assembly to his office and at gun-point forcefully removed the mace from his office to illegally conduct the plenary where they approved the reconstitution of the care-taker committees in the councils and confirmation of the commissioners.

'To demonstrate that police had interest and were active involved in this constitutional breach, they used their trucks to block entrances to the Assembly Complex, preventing members of APC who had one business or the other to do in the House of Assembly. Electronics media were prevented from covering the sitting while selected print media reporters were allowed in.

“We in the All Progressives Congress (APC) are law-abiding and responsible Nigerians. We have been playing our constitutional roles and we will continue doing that to lift Nigeria as a responsible member of the international community where the rule of law is supreme,” he said.

The seven PDP members who sat are : Ajibola Samuel- Ekiti East II; Adeojo. Alexander- Ekiti South West II; Adeloye Adeyinka- Ikole I; Israel Olowo Ajiboye; Fatunbi Olajide J. A -Moba II; ‎Olugbemi Joseph Dele- Ikole II and Olayinka Modupe Abeni- Ado II.