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Ondo Assembly directs CJ to constitute panel to investigate Aiyedatiwa

The impeachment process against deputy governor, Mr. Luck Aiyedatiwa, may have commenced with the directive by the state’s House of Assembly to the Chef Judge of the state, Olusegun Odusola to constitute a panel to investigate allegations of gross misconduct levelled against the embattled Second Citizen in the state.
Recall that the Assembly had, on Monday, served Mr. Aiyedatiwa with the notice of the allegations, which is the first formal step in impeachment proceedings.
Mr. Aiyedatiwa had, in response, approached the state High Court sitting, in Akure, seeking to halt the process.

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He also prayed the court to restrain the Chief Judge from constituting any panel for his impeachment.
The embattled deputy governor denied any wrongdoing, saying he had been loyal to Governor Rotimi Akeredolu while the governor was abroad on medical leave.
But at an Extraordinary Session, on Monday evening, the lawmakers directed the Chief Judge to constitute a panel to investigate Mr. Aiyedatiwa.
Presenting a motion, the Majority Leader of the House, Hon. Oluwole Ogunmolasuyi, said the move was in line with the Nigerian constitution.
The motion was seconded by Hon. Tope Komolafe who represents Ifedore State Constituency in the Assembly.
“In line with the Nigerian Constitution, Section 188 Sub Section 4-5, the Chief Judge of the State shall as requested by the House of Assembly, appoint a panel of seven persons who are of unquestionable character, integrity to investigate the allegation as regarded by the section,” the motion stated.
The Speaker, Hon. Olamide Oladiji, in his comments, said the lawmakers had a duty to investigate any allegation against an official in line with the Constitution.
He said the House would follow due process in its actions on the issue.
Oladiji then directed the chief judge to set up a seven-member panel of inquiry to investigate the allegation against the deputy governor.

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“The Chief Judge is hereby implored to appoint a panel of seven persons who are of unquestionable integrity to investigate the allegation against the Deputy Governor and report to the house.
“The deputy governor is hereby given seven days to respond to the letter written to him by this honourable House.”
In the letter to the deputy governor, the House made generic accusations of ‘gross misconduct’ against Mr Aiyedatiwa.
“At its plenary sitting on Wednesday 20th September 2023, a notice of allegations of gross misconduct against your excellency duly signed by Eleven (11) Honourable members of the Ondo State House of Assembly was considered on the floor of the house,” the letter read.

“Allegations against your excellency are: (I) Gross misconduct (II) abuse of office with actions likely to bring down Ondo State Government. (III) Financial recklessness (IV) Publications in print media by your media aides maligning the credibility of the Governor, etc.
“Pursuant to the provision of Section 188(2)(b) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) that Your Excellency should be availed with a copy of the notice for you to respond to the allegations contained therein.”
Although he has been accused of “gross misconduct,” Aiyedatiwa’s travails arose from alleged disloyalty to Akeredolu when the latter was incapacitated.