35 Assembly Speakers Decry Change in Ekiti House Leadership

Speakers of the other 35 Houses of Assembly in the country on Friday in Abuja said they would not recognise Dele Olugbemi as the new Speaker of the Ekiti State legislature.

Speaking under the auspices of the Conference of Speakers of State Legislatures, CSSL, a forum that comprises all the speakers of the 36 states of the federation, its chairman, Sam Ikon, stated the body’s position in Abuja while addressing journalists at an interactive session of Civil Society Organisations and Speakers of State Houses of Assembly.

The forum tagged “Constitution Amendment Bills Awaiting passage”, organised by the Policy and Legal Advocacy Centre, PLAC, Ikon, who is also Speaker of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, said the group still recognised Adewale Omirin as the Speaker of the Ekiti State House of Assembly because the mode of his impeachment was illegal and unconstitutional.

According to Ikon, there was nowhere in the world where a minority could outweigh the majority for the purpose of removing a Speaker. The conference, he said, was neither partial nor sentimental, adding that Olugbemi would have been recognised if Omirin’s impeachment had followed due process.

The Ekiti State crisis erupted when only seven lawmakers of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, out of an Assembly of twenty-six members, with the protection of armed mobile policemen, sat and impeached the Speaker.






     

     

    A new speaker and deputy were promptly elected. Omirin, who gave a press conference in Lagos, alleged that the lives of the nineteen lawmakers who were not a part of the impeachment fiasco were in danger. Alleging that law enforcement agents were conniving with the Ekiti State governor, Ayo Fayose, to hound perceived opponents, he however affirmed that his 19-strong member are set to return to Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, ready to be killed by the Ayodele Fayose- led government if necessary.

    “We are going to fight with law; we are not running from Ekiti. We want him to kill one of us. We are going back to Ekiti. What we are doing here in Lagos is to let the whole world know what is happening in Ekiti,” he stated.

    Responding to accusations of meddling in the state legislative assembly, Fayose has said he is not involved in the crisis rocking the state assembly. In a statement issued by his chief press secretary, Idowu Adelusi, the governor said: “It is not only ridiculous to link the executive arm of government with what is happening in the legislative arm,” adding that “there is separation of powers among all tiers of government and Governor Fayose is not a member of the assembly.”

    Ayo Fayose who was impeached as Ekiti State governor in 2006 was returned to the State House, Ado Ekiti, after an electoral victory at the polls in June.

     

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