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Olaniyan impeached, Lawal takes oath as new Oyo dep gov

The Oyo State House of Assembly Monday impeached the Deputy Governor, Rauf Olaniyan, and a former Commissioner for Justice, Barr Bayo Lawal was immediately sworn…

The Oyo State House of Assembly Monday impeached the Deputy Governor, Rauf Olaniyan, and a former Commissioner for Justice, Barr Bayo Lawal was immediately sworn in as deputy governor.

Olaniyan was removed after the lawmakers’ consideration of the recommendations of a seven-man panel set up by the Chief Judge, Munta Abimbola, to investigate him over gross misconduct, abuse of office, financial recklessness, and abandonment of official duty, among others.

According to the report of the panel presented during yesterday’s plenary, Olaniyan was found guilty of all the allegations levelled against him.

All the 23 PDP lawmakers at the plenary voted in support of the recommendations of the panel.

Olaniyan was elected on a joint ticket with Gov Seyi Makinde on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), but later jumped ship to the All Progressives Congress (APC) on account of irreconcilable differences with the governor.

While swearing in the new deputy governor, Makinde charged him to be loyal to the state and the government.

 ‘It’s a charade’

Meanwhile, Olaniyan has described his impeachment as a charade, stressing that it would not stand.

Olaniyan, in a statement yesterday by his lawyer, Afolabi Fashanu (SAN), said the panel constituted to investigate him was paid to do what it did.

He faulted Justice Abimbola for constituting the panel which recommended his removal from office.

He said it was unfortunate that the panel members allowed themselves to be compromised and used to do a dirty job.

The statement reads in part: “Investigation by the committee set up by the honourable chief judge is a charade that cannot stand the test of time. In the first instance, the honourable chief judge, with respect, breached his oath of office by ignoring the service of notice of appeal and application for injunction pending appeal when he proceeded to constitute the investigation committee.

“This is against established law and practice. On the part of the panel, they were appointed and paid to do the bodge job, which must be contrary to good conscience.

“They served the deputy governor on Friday around 10:45am and asked him to appear at 11am. We wrote to inform them that his excellency needed time to prepare for his defence. In their desperation to do the job for which they were paid, they rejected the letter, sat on Saturday and completed their task the same day.”

The statement further reads: “Where is the fairness here? The members of the committee are supposed to be men above board. You have a reverend father, a Jerusalem pilgrim and an alhaji among them. This is clear evidence that we are not yet ripe for democratic practice.”