The Chairman of the All Progressives Congress in Ondo State, Mr Ade Adetimehin, has said the party will not interfere in the impeachment proceedings initiated by the state House of Assembly against the Deputy Governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa.
In an interview on Thursday, Adetimehin told newsmen that the impeachment proceedings were completely a legislative affair and the party would not meddle in it.
The House of Assembly began an impeachment process against the deputy governor on the grounds of alleged gross misconduct while serving as acting governor during Governor Rotimi Akeredolu’s medical vacation.
At a plenary on Wednesday, the House had directed the clerk to write the deputy governor to invite him to the House over the allegations against him.
When inquired about the party’s stance on the situation, the Chairman of the Ondo APC responded that the House of Assembly was investigating the Deputy Governor’s actions during Governor Akeredolu’s medical vacation, aiming to clarify related issues.
“What the House of Assembly is investigating is to clarify some issues that have to do with the office of the Deputy Governor while acting as the governor when the governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, was on medical vacation and nothing more,” Adetimehin had said.
“As a political party, we are not involved with any issue that has to do with the work of the legislative body. We can only watch the development.”
But the opposition Peoples Democratic Party was reported to have condemned the ruling party, expressing excitement that the brewing crisis would sink the APC ahead of next year’s governorship election.
The Ondo State House of Assembly assured fairness in the Deputy Governor’s impeachment process.
The Chairman of the House Committee on Information, Mr. Olatunji Oshati, clarified that the letter to the deputy governor didn’t presume guilt. He also said the allegations did not equal outright impeachment.
“We find it necessary to address some misconceptions regarding the allegation letter served on the Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Hon. Lucky Aiyedatiwa. It is crucial that our people understand that an allegation letter does not equate to an impeachment verdict.
“Indeed, the allegation letter served on the Deputy Governor marks the initiation of the impeachment proceedings. However, it’s essential to remember that this is a procedure rooted in due process, not a hastily conducted impeachment. We are conscious of the integrity of our present Assembly and will not falter in our constitutional responsibilities to our constituents.”
The House also declared that the entire process still remained within the stage of allegations, stating that it was committed to examining the allegations objectively.
“Our primary responsibility is to uphold the integrity of our beloved state and foster accountability and transparency, even at the highest levels of government.
“Consequently, we urge our constituents to refrain from making premature judgments. Neither the deputy governor nor the governor are immune to legislative actions. The allegation letter has been served, and Mr. Deputy Governor has the full right to defend himself. Rest assured, we are committed to following due process and will do so diligently.”