Aiyedatiwa sworn in as Ondo governor

ACTING governor of Ondo state, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, has been sworn in as governor following the death of his principal, Rotimi Akeredolu, who died in the early hours of Wednesday, December 27.

The ceremony was presided over by the state chief judge, Olusegun Odusola, who administered the oath of office on Wednesday in the presence of other judges and top government functionaries.

In his inaugural speech, Aiyedatiwa described Akeredolu’s passing as devastating.

He said the late governor’s initiatives reduced criminality and banditry in the state and the South-West.

Aiyedatiwa promised to complete and build on the late governor’s infrastructural and other ongoing projects in the state.

“This event has placed a burden on all of us to pull together and stay together as one because we have the onerous responsibility to continue to sustain the legacies of Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu SAN CON, which was good governance…

“Our leader and governor during his time embarked upon several landmark projects, many if which have been completed and several ones ongoing. We now have the responsibility to complete them,” he said.

Earlier on Wednesday, the Ondo state government, confirming the former governor’s death, said in a statement that he died of prostate cancer.

Akeredolu and Aiyedatiwa had been involved in a months-long feud over the governor’s insistence on retaining power despite being unable to function optimally due to ill health.

On Friday, November 24, The ICIR reported that Akeredolu had been out of Ondo state for 171 days, nearly six months since he was flown out of Nigeria to receive care for an undisclosed medical condition.

Although he returned to Nigeria in September, the governor remained in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital, where he governed the state.

He only transmitted power to his deputy on Tuesday, December 12, when he was about to embark on a fresh medical vacation to Germany.



    Amid the feud between him and his deputy, the Ondo State Assembly moved to impeach the Deputy Governor despite the Federal High Court in Abuja restraining the legislators from impeaching him.

    President Bola Tinubu waded into the dispute in November, urging all parties to bury the hatchet and maintain the status quo.

    “This means that Governor Akeredolu remains the chief executive of the state. Aiyedatiwa remains deputy governor, and members of the state executive council continue their respective duties, even as the leadership of the state’s House of Assembly and the APC chapter in Ondo state is preserved,” a statement by the presidency released after the meeting disclosed.

    Conceding to the President’s directives, Aiyedatiwa accepted to remain in his position as deputy, describing the crisis as part of politics, and the state assembly withdrew impeachment plans against him.

    Ijeoma Opara is a journalist with The ICIR. Reach her via [email protected] or @ije_le on Twitter.

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