The brickbats over the propriety or otherwise of Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu handing over to his estranged deputy, Agboola Ajayi continued, yesterday, as the latter insisted on taking over the reins of government as acting governor.
On Tuesday, Governor Akeredolu disclosed he had tested positive for COVID-19, but allayed the people’s fears by asserting he would continue working from self-isolation.
Following this development, some supporters of the deputy governor have commenced a social media pressure on Akeredolu to hand over to Ajayi.
Two weeks ago, Ajayi had defected to the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to run for the party’s governorship ticket, even as he insisted he would not resign his position as Deputy governor.
But the State Government, over the weekend, made a formal declaration foreclosing consideration of handing over governance to Ajayi.
The Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Donald Ojogo, said aside the loss of trust and alleged treachery on Ajayi’s part, governance was not grounded, as Akeredolu remained active in the line of duty.
Ojogo’s position notwithstanding, the Deputy governor insisted Akeredolu remained partially incapacitated, and had no choice than to hand over the reins of governance to him. He gave Akeredolu a 21-day ultimatum to effect the process.
In a statement issued and signed by his media adviser, Allen Sowore, the Deputy governor took a swipe at his boss for not living up to his legal profession as a Senior Advocate of Nigeria.
Curiously, Sowore’s statement, in what looks like a U-turn, came less than 10 hours after Tope Okeowo, Ajayi’s press secretary issued another one that indicated he (Ajayi) “was not prepared to step in for Governor Akeredolu, since he was not incapacitated.”
In the statement, Sowore argued that the governor’s background ought to bear on governance and the present situation, due to his background as a lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, (SAN).
“But it is rather surprising and worrisome that the Governor has chosen the part of perversion of justice, by allowing his close aides to go astray in a matter of constitutionality. Section 190(2) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) is apposite in the prevailing constitutional aberration in Ondo State…”