President Tinubu Halt the Invocation of ‘Doctrine Of Necessity’ in Ondo
President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s intervention in the leadership crisis in Ondo State last week halted plans to have the state House of Assembly invoke a doctrine of necessity and declare the deputy governor, Lucky Ayedatiwa, acting governor.
The president, according to Empowered Newswire, preferred a different approach to addressing the leadership vacuum in the state.
The paper quoted authoritative sources from Aso Villa as explaining that “Mr. President is not opposed to the rightful invocation of the doctrine of necessity, but he was blind-sided when he was told that security forces from both the police and the military were already stationed on Thursday, November 23 at the Ondo State Assembly in Akure to secure the building preparatory to the resolution.”
One of the sources who did not want his name in print said when the president asked who gave the order for the security agents to be deployed, he was informed that it was the APC national leaders who had been working with members of the Ondo State Assembly that made the arrangements.
At that point, the source said Tinubu then called the chairman of the APC and wondered why such a move would be afoot in his own geopolitical zone – the South West – without his knowledge.
The President then gave orders for the security forces to stand down, just as he quickly summoned a meeting with all stakeholders at the Presidential Villa the next day, which was Friday, November 24.
Another presidential source noted that Tinubu wants Akeredolu and his loyalists in the State to be carried along in determining the way forward, either through another power transfer to the deputy governor or the invocation of the doctrine of necessity.
A presidential statement later on Saturday said, “In his bid to restore political stability in Ondo State, President Bola Tinubu, late on Friday, waded into the months-long crisis between factions loyal to the executive governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, and the deputy governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa.
“This followed marathon negotiations between the President and the Deputy Governor, representatives of Governor Akeredolu, federal and state lawmakers of Ondo, officials of the state’s chapter of APC, and other stakeholders in the state at the State House, Abuja.
“The president advised all opposing parties to bury the hatchet and embrace peace, eliciting commitments to this effect.
“This means that Governor Akeredolu remains the chief executive of the state, Aiyedatiwa remains the deputy governor, and members of the State Executive Council continue their respective duties, even as the leadership of the state House of Assembly and the APC chapter in Ondo State is preserved.”
The President would be initiating communication with the ailing Ondo State Governor at the earliest opportunity to cement the agreement he reached with the APC stakeholders in the State and the constitutional options to move Ondo State away from the crisis.
The source added that once the agreement with the President is in full force the Governor is likely to transfer power again to his Deputy like he has done in the past.
“Check the records, Governor Akeredolu transferred power to the deputy governor in June for three months when he went to Germany for treatment. And that was not the only time the Governor has done that,” another source close to Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu said, adding that the governor had even made it public before that Ayedatiwa would be his preferred successor.
APC national chairman, Dr.Abdullahi Ganduje, had set up a Reconciliation Committee on the Ondo State crisis with former Katsina State Governor Matsari delegated to lead the assignment. The Committee held a series of meetings with APC stakeholders including State Assembly members in Abuja and it was part of the outcome of this that some Ondo State Assembly members were set to effect a meeting of the Assembly slated for last Friday where the doctrine of necessity was to be invoked.
The plan was to secure the premises of the state assembly by Thursday evening and so hundreds of military and police operatives were already on the ground before the president halted the plan and chaired the meeting at the Villa on Friday evening.
At the meeting, the president also asked the deputy governor to write an undated letter of resignation as “a form of insurance” for his expected demonstration of loyalty to Governor Akeredolu.
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