The Ekiti State House of Assembly has ordered Governor Ayodele Fayose to set up a judicial or administrative panel to probe his predecessor, Dr Kayode Fayemi.
The Assembly said the step became necessary after Fayemi, who is the Minister of Solid Minerals Development, refused to appear before it to answer questions about the alleged diversion of N852bn Universal Basic Education Board’s fund under his administration.
Relying on Section 129 0f the 1999 Constitution, the Assembly had on March 22, 2016, and February 7, 2017, ordered Fayemi to appear before it and clear his name over the misappropriation allegedly perpetrated during his time.
Fayemi, however, did not show up. He later approached the Federal High Court in Ado Ekiti and filed N500m libel suit against the Assembly.
The Assembly, during its plenary on Thursday, which was presided over by the Speaker, Hon Kola Oluwawole, accused Fayemi of treating it with contempt, saying that was not expected of him as a former governor of the state.
After deliberations, during which members – Samuel Omotoso, Abiola Jeje, and Ekundayo Akinleye – said there was the need for the Assembly to compel the Executive to compose the panel to probe Fayemi, the Majority Leader, Hon Tunji Akinyele, moved the motion for the probe of the governor.
It was seconded by Jeje.
Before putting the motion to a voice vote, the Speaker said, “Dr John Kayode Fayemi has slighted this house by his conduct, by refusing to honour our invitation.
“This Assembly duly invited him to come and explain how he managed the finances of this state, particularly the SUBEN fund and other projects.
“The House had summoned him three times, but he disobeyed the regulation of this house. So, the State government should as a matter of urgency set up a judicial or administrative panel of inquiry to look into the finances of this State under Fayemi’s government.”
The Chairman, House Committee on Information, Samuel Omotoso, criticised the Inspector General of Police, Mr Ibrahim Idris, and other security agencies for failing to arrest Fayemi after the Assembly issued a warrant for his arrest.
He said, “The IGP can’t claim that Governor Fayemi is at large. He has been attending the weekly Federal Executive Council meeting and nobody even called him for questioning or thought of arresting him. That was unfortunate.”
Jeje and Akinleye urged the Chief Judge of the State, Justice Ayodeji Daramola, to live up to expectations in composing the judicial panel to unravel the mystery behind the state’s finances under the immediate past administration.