As a concerned citizen, I find myself deeply troubled and disappointed by recent events unfolding within Ondo State’s political arena.
The looming impeachment proceedings against Deputy Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa, orchestrated by the Ondo State House of Assembly, have ignited a raging inferno of apprehension regarding the state of our governance and the hallowed rule of law. Ondo State, this is the time for patriotism.
It is particularly troubling to hear the Chairman of the House Committee on Information, Honourable Olatunji Shat, claim to have served a seven-day notice of gross misconduct on the Deputy Governor, only for Mr. Aiyedatiwa to categorically deny receiving such notice. This discrepancy of an ‘audio notice’ strikes at the heart of due process and constitutional integrity, and is nothing short of an affront to the principles upon which our nation was founded. It is a crying shame that such hanky-panky manoeuvres that undermine basic tenets of the rule of law are still a part of our political process.
The rule of law, I must reiterate, is not a mere abstraction. It is the bedrock upon which our society is built—a sentinel ensuring that justice is meted out equitably and without prejudice. To undermine this venerable principle is to flirt with chaos and sow the seeds of anarchy, a path Ondo State must resolutely reject.
Honourable Members of the Ondo State House of Assembly will do well to remember that impeachment proceedings, enshrined in our constitution, are not to be deployed as pawns in the hands of political manoeuvring or proxy vendettas. Impeachment proceedings are solemn processes that demand scrupulous attention to legality. Therefore, the audacious attempt to sidestep established procedures to hastily plunge into such a weighty constitutional matter not only jeopardizes the sanctity of our legal framework but also casts a long shadow of suspicion over potential political motivations.
The roles being played by the Speaker of the Ondo State House of Assembly and Honourable Olatunji Shat, Chairman of the House Committee on Information, in this unfolding debacle has been disappointing and downright shameful. Their actions, which appear to subvert due process and politicize a constitutionally clear procedure, are nothing short of an affront to the principles of democracy. While it remains unclear the true motive behind their zealous conspiracy, for selves or by proxy on the behalf of another, it is without a doubt that Deputy Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa is in the eye of a storm brewed by those averse to his meteoric rise to prominence in the politics of the state, and top performance while holding the fort in the absence of his principal and Governor of the State, Rotimi Akeredolu.
I enjoin the good people of Ondo State to refuse to allow the state become a theatre of farce, a symbol of how institutions, meant to safeguard our laws, can be manipulated for personal gain. Those who wield power, particularly the principal officers of the Ondo State House of Assembly, must bear the full weight of responsibility for this display of recklessness and disregard for the law.
To the members of the Ondo State House of Assembly, I beseech you, in the name of justice and the rule of law, to swiftly rectify this situation. As a concerned citizen, I implore you to align your actions with the tenets of our constitution, rectifying this alarming situation, and upholding the sacred principles that define our democracy. The people of Ondo State, whose dreams and aspirations you were chosen to safeguard, are watching. Let the law prevail, and let justice be the cornerstone of your actions.
The people of Ondo State and well-meaning citizens nationwide must stand as one and unite in a call for accountability and adherence to the very laws that form the backbone of our society. Our democracy, fragile yet resilient, depends on the unwavering commitment of those in power to respect its tenets.
I want to conclude by once again imploring the Ondo State House of Assembly to recognize the gravity of the situation at hand. The eyes of concerned citizens are upon you, and history will judge your actions. Uphold the principles that underpin our democracy, restore faith in the Ondo State House of Assembly, and ensure that justice is served impartially and without bias.
Pelumi Olajengbesi Esq. is a Legal Professional and Managing Partner at Law Corridor, Abuja.