The embattled governor of Ekiti State, Ayo Fayose, has called on his supporters to take to the streets of Ado-Ekiti, the State capital on Tuesday, to prevent All Progressives Congress’ lawmakers from impeaching him.
In a live television broadcast Monday evening, Mr. Fayose pleaded with the Ekiti people not to allow his government to be truncated by the 19 APC lawmakers.
“They have come again and you people should not allow them to spoil Ekiti State,” Mr. Fayose appealed.
He particularly called on the unions of motorcycle riders, as well other organised pressure groups to rally round him to prevent the lawmakers from carrying out the threat to impeach him.
Governor Fayose and the APC lawmakers have been locked in a prolonged battle since Mr. Fayose’s re-election in 2014. The governor ejected the lawmakers from the state for months as they made moves to remove him.
The lawmakers, emboldened by the inauguration of Muhammadu Buhari as President, threatened to resume sitting to impeach him, prompting panic within government circles in the state.
The governor had promised to pay the lawmakers owed salaries as part of moves to resolve the issues.
Mr. Fayose said on Monday that he had fulfilled his side of an agreement reached at a peace meeting held in Akure by paying the seven-month salaries of the lawmakers.
According to Mr. Fayose, the monies were paid in cheques as demanded by the lawmakers on May 26, 2015.
He said the decision of the lawmakers to still commence impeachment proceedings was an invitation to chaos as it would be resisted by the Ekiti people.
He called the attention of the police and the Federal Government to the action of the lawmakers in despite a Court order directing that the status quo be maintained.
But the spokesman for the lawmakers, Wole Olujobi, told Premium Times on Monday that there was nothing illegal about their actions, which he said had the backing of the law.
Mr. Olujobi denied that the lawmakers were making any plans to force themselves into the assembly complex.
“There is nothing like forceful impeachment in Nigerian law. If impeachment offences are committed, the offender is investigated by a committee,” he said.
“If he is not guilty, that is the end. If he is guilty, the law must take its course.”
He noted that the law protects the lawmakers to enter the chamber freely to do their jobs.
“If condition exists that threatens their lives in doing so, they can legally seek police protection to enter their offices to do their jobs,” Mr. Olujobi said.
“What the APC lawmakers are doing is pure application of Nigerian law. There is nothing forceful about it.”
Mr. Fayose’s Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, had called on President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene, threatening to call out its supporters to resist an attempt to remove the governor.