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‘There’s governance vacuum’ — CSOs ask Akeredolu to resume duty or transfer power to deputy

‘There’s governance vacuum’ — CSOs ask Akeredolu to resume duty or transfer power to deputy
November 16
19:55 2023

A coalition of civil society organisations has asked Rotimi Akeredolu, governor of Ondo, to resume his duties or transfer power to Lucky Aiyedatiwa, the state’s deputy governor.

Akeredolu, who is in a disagreement with his deputy, returned to Nigeria in the first week of September after a three-month medical leave in Germany.

The governor who landed in Ibadan, the Oyo capital, has since been working from the state.

After a protest by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) demanding to know why the governor was not working in Ondo, Doyin Odebowale, an aide to Akeredolu, said his principal needed accommodation to enable him to recover quickly.

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Odebowale said Akeredolu’s state of health would not permit him to continue staying at a two-bedroom apartment that he has been “managing” for the past six years.

Addressing a press conference in Abuja on Thursday, Tunji Asaolu, the coalition’s convener, said “political jobbers” are exploiting the situation to the detriment of the residents of Ondo.

“We, however, think the governor’s protracted absence raises serious concerns about the functionality of governance, effective decision-making and administrative efficiency in our beloved state,” Asaolu said.

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“The intent of the framers of our Constitution in sections 189,190 and 191 is to avoid any kind of vacuum. And these sections explicitly emphasise the necessity to avoid a vacuum in leadership.

“The prolonged absence of the governor creates a governance vacuum, thereby impeding the effective administration of Ondo State.

“Equally distressing is the apparent political interference by some persons not elected by the good people of Ondo state, preventing the Deputy Governor from fully discharging his constitutional duties in the absence of Governor Akeredolu.

“The people know their governor and his deputy, not a group of cabal or individuals constituting a cabal.

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“We call on all relevant authorities to urgently address this matter and ensure the seamless transition of governance to the Ondo deputy governor, in accordance with the provisions of the constitution.

“The people of Ondo state deserve transparent and accountable leadership, and we will not stand idly by while political machinations jeopardize the well-being of this noble and well respected state.”

The convener prayed to God to fully restore Akeredolu’s health.

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