Thursday, June 25, 2015

Aregbesola Impeachment : Osun Assembly Sends Him Judge's Petition

SPEAKER of the Osun State House of Assembly, Honourable Najeem Salaam, on Wednesday, confirmed the receipt of a copy of the petition written by a serving female judge in the state, Justice Folahanmi Oloyede against Governor Rauf Aregbesola, over non-payment of salaries.

Similarly, Nigerian Tribune reliably gathered that the assembly had forwarded a letter of acknowledgment to Justice Oloyede, indicating that her petition had been received, while also sending a copy of the petition to the governor for his defence.

Speaking during interaction with journalists in Osogbo, on Wednesday, the speaker said “I can confirm that the assembly received the petition. But, there is an ongoing strike now, therefore, we cannot do anything serious on it.”

According to Salaam, “a copy of the petition had been sent to Governor Aregbesola for him to state his own defence.”

Credible source within the legislature also informed the Nigerian Tribune that the assembly had written another letter to Aregbesola, requesting him to react to the content of the petition.

Speaking on the development, the clerk of the assembly, Mr Mudashiru Oyeniran, confirmed the receipt of the petition, stressing that work would begin on it at the appropriate time.

Justice Oloyede had called on the state House of Assembly to investigate the alleged mismanagement of the state financial resources by the governor and his deputy, in accordance with sections 128 and 129 of the 1999 Constitution, saying there was no moral justification for their continued stay in office.

In a 30-page petition, she urged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime, Amnesty International, Transparency International, among others, to investigate any other person found to be responsible for what he described as “deliberate mismanagement of the economy of Osun State.”

The petition read in part: “I declare that in addition to the media-hype of Osun’s parlous financial condition, I have firsthand experience which constitutes evidence of the unfortunate situation in which Osun currently finds itself. Even Mr Governor has admitted publicly the fact that Osun is in financial quagmire and that he is clueless on how to pull it out of the doldrums.

“Mr Governor’s argument that salaries can only be paid from statutory allocations is also faulty, we demand that he substantiate his claim by giving the section of the law that so provides. In any event, all funds, all allocations and all expenditures are expected to be backed by legislation, and are statutory, otherwise, they are illegal.

“Consequently, the admitted inability of Mr Governor and his deputy to pay pensions, salaries and allowances for periods ranging from eight to 11 months now, as a consequence of their own decision to accumulate debts beyond the capacity of the state internally generated revenue, whilst the very ‘actors’ Mr Governor and his deputy continue to enjoy their security allowances in hundreds of millions, is a violation of their oaths of office.”


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