Amidst bitter politicking, the Ondo state House of Assembly, on Tuesday voted to impeach its deputy speaker, Iroju Ogundeji.
But he has denounced the action, saying he remains the deputy speaker.
The action of the House came just as Mr Ogundeji is battling to secure his reinstatement after serving a controversial suspension for about six months.
The court had upturned his suspension and that of three others who were opposed to the stand of the leadership in the botched impeachment plot of the deputy governor, Abgoola Ajayi.
Mr Iroju, who represents Odigbo Constituency 2, was impeached following a resolution of the house.
He was immediately replaced by Samuel Aderoboye.
The House led by its Speaker, Bamidele Oleyelogun, accused Mr Iroju of “gross misconduct” citing it as the ground for the impeachment.
The lawmakers held that by his conduct he had brought disrepute to the assembly.
It also claimed that 20 lawmakers signed the impeachment proceedings and that it required 18 to form two-thirds of the house.
The assembly also reconstituted its principal offices, by removing another suspended lawmaker, Tomide Akinribido of the ZLP, as the minority leader and replaced him with Festus Akingbaso of the PDP while Ogunmolasuyi was named as the new majority leader.
The House also named Taofeek Oladele as the new chief whip in place of Adeyemi Olayemi.
Mr Ogundeji told PREMIUM TIMES that the House was engaging in “legislative and parliamentary rascality,” given that they did not have the number of lawmakers to impeach him.
Citing Sections 92 of the 1999 Constitution as amended, Mr Iroju said the lawmakers were in error and failed to meet the provisions of the constitution.
He said nine of the 26 members of the house were not part of the act carried out on Tuesday.
He argued that the leadership of the house had been plotting to impeach the deputy governor for a while, but could not do so because it lacked the two-third majority required by the constitution to do so.
“As I speak to you all the nine lawmakers are with me, so how did they get the number to carry out the impeachment? he queried.
” I remain the deputy speaker of the house because they do not have power to do what they have done.”
Also reacting to the development, Mr Akinribido told PREMIUM TIMES that the action of the house was illegal and did not meet the required two-third majority.
There are 26 members in the Ondo State House of Assembly.
“They claimed that 20 members signed but nine of us did not sign and were not even invited to the plenary,” he said.
“So who signed? It means they have forged the signature of some of us.”
He challenged the house leadership to read out or publish the names of the 20 lawmakers for them to confirm.
Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility
Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.
For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.
By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
TEXT AD: To advertise here . Call Willie +2347088095401...