The All Progressives Congress in Ekiti State has criticised members of the House of Assembly for allowing Governor Ayodele Fayose to act against protocol in the presentation of the 2016 Appropriation Bill in the hallowed chambers on Wednesday.
The APC’s Publicity Secretary, Taiwo Olatunbosun, said in a statement that it was regrettable that the lawmakers allowed the governor to get away with the breach of official protocol that diminished the integrity of the Assembly, an institution that must keep its rules.
Regretting that the governor was “running state affairs like a bukataria”, Olatunbosun said: “The world watched in disbelief as Governor Fayose stormed the House of Assembly during presentation of his 2016 budget proposal in T-shirt and jeans against the official prescription of full native dress or complete English suit during such sittings. The governor’s appearance before the house of assembly in a garage tout manner is uncultured and flagrant disregards for rule of law and constituted authority. It is ungovernorship, a violation of law and order, unruly, and an abuse of power
“We saw the first public declaration of loyalty by the Assembly members on the day of inauguration when they all prostrated for Fayose in the chambers, stating he is their father, little wonder that the speaker and the leadership of the house were not bold enough to tutor or caution him on the official mode of dressing allowed in the hallowed chamber when he presented the budget.
“More shock came when the governor grabbed the gavel, one of the official symbols of authority of the Assembly, and started conducting a mock sitting while his thugs in the gallery acting as the honourable members were responding to his question on who supported and against the quick passage of the budget.
“The worst was the quality of English by the governor of the Fountain of Knowledge who said: ‘those who doesn’t support quick passage of the budget should say Aye or Nay’ to which both the gallery and Assembly members hooted ‘Aye.'”
Berating the lawmakers for allowing the Executive to rubbish the established protocol of the Assembly and put the state in ridicule by allowing Fayose to use the gavel as well as appearing in casual wear, Olatunbosun said the members’ conduct demonstrated confirmation of their subservient relationship with the governor in clear breach of the Nigerian Constitution.
He said: “This set of strange honourable members demonstrated their mediocre pedigree when they all prostrated before the governor on their day of inauguration. What was to follow was reports that Fayose kept the Mace, the official symbol of the Assembly, in the Government House even as the governor boasted that he owned the Assembly and that he was only being represented by Speaker Kola Oluwawole in the House.
“The confirmation of all that came on Wednesday when Fayose seized the garvel and was virtually conducting the passage of the budget to the pleasure of the lawmakers, who apparently lack basic experience to be in the House of Assembly.”
Olatunbosun said to APC and Ekiti State people in general, this was a big blow to the constitution of Nigeria and tenets of democracy after the governor had sacked the court last year, sacked the former Speaker with seven members and passed last year budget with the same number.
He said: “We all saw the intrigues that characterized the primaries that returned the new members. It was ballot snatching and violence on massive scale. The same for April 11 Assembly poll.
“Fayose just selected his cronies across the state above well-educated members and imposed them on the party. Most of them are miscreants and school drop outs who Fayose compensated as honourable members.
“Fayose’s public declaration of political death for any Assembly member who works against his interest points to where Ekiti people are headed in the business of lawmaking in the next three years.”
Olatubosun regretted that majority of the present lawmakers in the House of Assembly could have been described as local government councillors as records of many of them indicated a crop of people lacking basic education that could prepare them for the honourable duty of law-making.
“Because of their inadequacies, they will continue to legitimise and encourage illegality and impunity because they don’t understand the nitty-gritty of lawmaking process and independence of mind required in keeping the laws of Nigeria such that it will strengthen the practice of democracy to benefit the larger society outside the narrow interest of the governor,” Olatunbosun explained.