Nigeria: Ondo Deputy Governor Rules Out Resignation

20 October 2020

The deputy governor of Ondo State, Agboola Ajayi, has ruled out the option of resignation from office after losing the October 10 governorship election in the state.

There were reports that the deputy governor might resign his office following plots by members of the House of Assembly to make a second attempt to remove him from office by impeachment.

The house had in June made the move to impeach Mr Ajayi over his defection from the All Progressives Congress, but could not muster the required number to sign the impeachment notice.

Mr Ajayi had moved over to the Peoples Democratic Party to seek the governorship ticket, after falling out with the governor, Rotimi Akeredolu.

He later found a place at the Zenith Labour Party where he contested the election, but came third.

PREMIUM TIMES gathered that the House of Assembly was due to resume sitting on Tuesday, but had to suspend resumption following the EndSARS protest currently on the streets of Akure, the Ondo State capital.

Allen Sowore, who is the media aide to Mr Ajayi, said the news that his boss was about to resign this week, is false.

"The Deputy Governor was elected together with Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN by the good people of Ondo State in 2016," he said.

"That four years mandate given to both men will not end until 23rd February 2021.

"The news of his impending resignation is being sponsored by the governor through the propaganda machinery and machinations of Ondo State Ministry of Information as a subterfuge in preparation for a macabre plan to put the deputy governor's forged signature on a prepared resignation letter."

He said the public should be wary of the latest antics of the Governor to remove his deputy illegally.

"The people of Ondo State, who voted for Agboola Ajayi as Deputy Governor in 2016 have not asked him to resign or quit the government," Mr Sowore further said.

"Therefore, he has no reason whatsoever to relinquish the people's mandate, which of course is limited by term/time, democratically bestowed upon him."

He also alleged that Mr Akeredolu was working on a plan to forge his deputy's signature on a letter of resignation.

A member of the house, Tomide Akinribido, who represents Ondo West Constituency, said he was not aware of any plot to impeach the deputy governor.

Mr Akinribido is a member of the Zenith Labour Party and is currently under suspension, following the botched effort to impeach Mr Ajayi.

"Of course they can impeach if they have the number," he said.

"The last effort failed and if the leadership wants to impeach, they have to start afresh and follow all the processes."

However, the Commissioner for Information in the state, Donald Ojogo, has described the allegations levelled against the governor, by his deputy, as false.

"Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, will rather deepen efforts as regards the current National Concern of youths protests," he said.

"All the same, one does not expect anything less from a thoroughly beaten and politically minimized egocentric being. The circumstances feeding his outburst are clearly understood.

"Defeated hopes, dashed expectations and fast-lane victims are very potent kickers and shadow boxers.

"One rather expects a ruptured false package to have a sober reflection in order to forge ahead than engage in further perdition.

"This is not the first time he would unveil untruths, not only about others, but about himself too. Forgery cannot, and has never been part of this Government.

"The signature of anyone is too insignificant to be forged. It's not in the character of Mr Governor or anyone in the Government he heads.

"It is left for Agboola Ajayi to place his conscience before the Moral Square as far as the claim about his position as deputy governor is concerned.

"Those whose identities are shrouded in such vices as forgery, perjury and made-up inadequacies are already some distance away from the Government led by Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu, SAN. They know themselves."

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