Osun Assembly Begins Aregbesola’s Impeachment Process | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Osun Assembly Begins Aregbesola’s Impeachment Process

Posted: Jul 17, 2015 at 9:15 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Gbenga Faturoti –  Osogbo


After weeks of uncertainties, Osun State House of Assembly on Thursday put paid to speculations making the round that it was attempting to sweep under the carpet the petition written by a serving judge in the state, Justice Folahanmi Oloyede, asking for the commencement of impeachment proceeding against Governor Rauf Aregbesola and his Deputy, Grace Titilayo Laoye-Tomori.

Justice Oloyede had, in her petition, urged the Assembly to probe how Aregbesola allegedly mismanaged the state resources to the level that the government could not pay workers’ salaries for seven months.

It would be recalled that the issue of Aregbesola’s inability to pay workers’ salaries had grounded the state, as workers embarked on industrial strike for about six weeks.

The strike was called off last Monday and workers were asked to resume work on Tuesday, but after just a day at work, the workers resumed the industrial action on the ground that the government had betrayed their trust.

After a bailout to states by the Federal Government, the Osun State Government was said to have assured labour leaders in the state that the government would pay two months salary, a development which prompted the workers to call for the suspension of the strike.

But against the agreement, the government, it was gathered, only paid half salary of January to workers.

Also last week, some civil society activists and pensioners in the state who were embarking on peaceful procession to the Assembly complex were reportedly attacked by hoodlums allegedly identified as state boys.

However, on Thursday, the Speaker of the Assembly, Najeem Salaam, at Thursday plenary, inaugurated a 7-man Committee that will look into Justice Oloyede’s petition against Aregbesola.

Announcing the committee during a press address on the floor of the Assembly, Salaam said that the committee would work for two weeks and come up with their recommendation, urging them to carry out the assignment without prejudice.

However, the composition of the panel did not go down well with a member of the House, Makinde Oladejo, who wondered why all the members of the committee were from the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), the same party of the governor.

Oladejo, who is representing Ife Central in the House, is a member of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP).

The members of the probe panel are Owoeye Timothy, Oladoye Folorunso, Adebayo Waseeu, Akinola Olasunkanmi, Ogunsola Oyeleke, Afolabi Olalekan and Adegboye Akintunde, who will serve as the Chairman.

While expressing dissatisfaction over the exclusion of minority from the probe panel, Oladejo said: “Though we are not here to serve as opposition, but what are the criteria they used in composing the committee that I did not have? How would you do such a thing without the opposition and the minority leader?

Stressing that all members should be carried along, Oladejo said; “Though, the majority may have their way, the minority will always have their say.”

In his address, the Speaker had said: “I acknowledge that the entire world is waiting for what we have to do with the petition forwarded to us by Justice Folahanmi Oloyede. I must disclose to you that Governor Rauf Aregbesola has obliged us his response to the petition and we have constituted a committee to look into the matter with a view to investigating the allegations leveled against him, and I am confident that the honourable men in this committee would do justice to the matter before them without fear or favour.

“Let it be known that we shall treat the petition with all commitment, because it emanates from a serving judge of the state,” Salaam said while assuring the public that justice would be done.

The Speaker stressed that the petitioner approached the Assembly because of the trust she has in the Assembly to do the right thing, and that the trust would not be betrayed.