Olamide Oladiji, the speaker, Ondo State House of Assembly, on Tuesday, said the embattled deputy governor of the state, Lucky Aiyedatiwa has failed to respond to a letter of notice served on him on September 25 bordering on allegations of gross misconduct.
Based on this, Oladiji has directed Olusegun Odusola, the chief judge of the state, to immediately constitute a seven-man panel to investigate the deputy governor.
According to the speaker, the letter was submitted to the deputy governor through his chief protocol officer.
Speaking at plenary in Akure, Oladiji, said that it was resolved by the assembly that in line with Section 188 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended, the deputy governor should be duly served a notice of the said allegations to enable him reply the query as appropriate.
“Concerted efforts were made to serve the notice on the deputy governor who for some time was not available for the service, prompting the assembly to approach the court for a substituted service of the notice on the deputy governor.
“On September 25, 2023, a substituted service of the notice of allegations was made on the deputy governor duly signed by more than one-third honorable members of the House as required by the Constitution in Section 188 Sub-section 2,” he stated.
According to him, the constitution stipulates that the assembly should wait for seven days for the embattled deputy governor to respond which has lapsed.
He said: “Distinguished colleagues, Section 188 of the Constitution states further that the deputy governor has 7 days within which to reply to the allegations leveled against him.
“The constitution states further that within seven days of the passing of a motion under the foregoing provisions of this section, the chief judge of the state shall at the request of the speaker of the House of Assembly, appoint a panel of seven persons who in his opinion are of unquestionable integrity, not being members of any public service, legislative house or political party, to investigate the allegation(s) has provided in this section.
“Distinguished colleagues, I, therefore, wish to seek your opinion to direct the Chief Judge of Ondo State, Hon. Justice Olusegun Ayedun Odusola to in line with this section of the constitution set up a seven-man panel to investigate the deputy governor on the allegations leveled against him,” the speaker said.
The speaker directed the clerk, Jaiyeola Benjamin on a headcount where they have 23 members out of 26 at the plenary.
Earlier, the majority leader, Oluwole Ogunmolasuyi,( Owo 1/APC), moved the motion for a notice on the Ondo State Impeachment Panel Procedure Rules that the panel should be constituted by the chief judge of the state. The motion was seconded by Afe Felix (Akoko North West 2)
“In line with the express provision of Section 188 (10) of the constitution, the panel shall not entertain or be bound by any court order or decision questioning or interfering with its proceedings.
“The parties to the petition shall have the right to appear in person or through their legal practitioners