The tone for a major controversy may have been set with the allegation by lawmakers in Ekiti state, Nigeria that they have been promised the sum of $1 million to have the state governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, impeached.
The state House of Assembly was last week raided and four members of the House reportedly arrested by men of the Department of State Service, DSS.
On Tuesday, members of the Assembly said there was a plot to coerce them into impeaching Fayose and that $1 million was being promised to members who are ready to be part of the impeachment plot.
The lawmakers did not specifically mention those behind the controversial plot, but hinted that those behind it are those that were defeated in elections in the state.
They vowed not to collaborate with anyone to truncate the government of Fayose, adding that, they were prepared to spend the rest of their tenure in DSS cell, instead of joining “people that they roundly defeated in five straight elections to cause another political instability in Ekiti State.”
Addressing the press on Tuesday, Chairman of the House Committee on Information, Gboyega Aribisogan, disclosed that “in the last four days, eight of our members had been visited by some men, who claimed to be officials of the DSS.
“Our members were told that their names were among those to be arrested and they must ‘cooperate’ if they do not want their bank accounts frozen and be kept in DSS detention indefinitely.”
The lawmakers said the 2006 experience, in which Assembly members in Ekiti State were hounded in detention and made to sign the impeachment of Governor Fayose on the table of the chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, will
never be repeated in the state.
Aribisogan, who was with 13 other members of the House of Assembly said: “we are here to inform the public through your various
medium the open involvement of men of the Department of State Service, DSS, from Abuja in the plot to unseat our state Governor, Mr. Peter Ayodele Fayose.
“The last Friday invasion of the State House of Assembly by armed men of the DSS in which four of our members were abducted, has been established to be a prelude to the clandestine plot to coerce members of the House of Assembly to impeach Governor Fayose.
“As at today, even Afolabi Akanni that we were able to confirm was with the DSS in Abuja is being held incommunicado. No one has been given access to him, not even his lawyers and doctors. We do not have any information as to the whereabouts of the other three.
“We are aware of the plot to arrest no fewer than 18 of our members with a view to forcing them to sign impeachment notice against Governor Fayose.
“The plot is being hatched by the same elements who masterminded the impeachment of Governor Fayose in 2006, which was eventually declared illegal by the Supreme Court and they are boasting of support of the DSS and the Presidency.
“In the last four days, eight of our member had been visited by some men, who claimed to be officials of the DSS.
“Our members were told that their names were among those to be arrested and they must ‘cooperate’ if they do not want their bank accounts frozen and be kept in DSS detention indefinitely.
“Also, our members were told that they will be provided with soft-landing in the APC if they cooperate. One of them revealed that
they promised to make him the Speaker, and eventually the Acting Governor.
“We however wish to tell the plotters of evil against the government of Ayodele Fayose and by extension the people of Ekiti State that we, members of the State House of Assembly are not interested in their evil plot.
“These agents of destabilisation should be reminded of the 2006 episode, which was responsible for Ekiti State having six governors in three years!
“Most importantly, Governor Fayose is our benefactor. He is our leader on whose political strength we are members of the State House of Assembly. We can even be called his stooges, we don’t mind. We will never do anything to jeopardise his interest and by extension, interests of Ekiti people.
“We therefore wish to state unequivocally that we are not interested in any $1 million.
“We won’t, because of any blood money, join forces with enemies of our state, who are desirous of destabilising the state just because they lost power.”