EKHA to impeached ex-Speaker: We have no powers to re-instate you
By; OLADELE ADEDAYO, Ado-Ekiti.
The Ekiti State House of Assembly has told an impeached former speaker of the House, Dr. Adewale Omirin that it has no power under the law to reverse his impeachment carried out by the Fourth Assembly in the State.
According to the Speaker of the Fifth Assembly, Rt. Hon. Kola Oluwawole, who addressed a press conference in company with other members of the House, Omirin had written a letter to the House, asking that his purported ‘unconstitutional’ impeachment be reversed.
Oluwawole said the letter dated 19 October, and titled; “Reversion of Unconstitutional impeachment: Re: Rt. Hon. Adewale Albert Omirin”, read in part that “on 20th November, 2014, 7 out of the 26 members of the Ekiti State House of Assembly purportedly sat and made a declaration of my impeachment as the Speaker and made Hon. Dele Olugbemi the speaker.
“The constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, which is the fulcrum of the legislative arm of government, states the requirement for the impeachment of a speaker which cannot be less than two-thirds majority.
“Hence, the action of the aforementioned date should be reverted and all records of Hon. Dele Olugbemi as the erroneous speaker should be obliterated and a declaration of the legally-constituted House of Assembly should re-write the wrong done to me and the status quo ante maintained.”
But the House added that it had replied Omirin via a letter with reference number EKHA/SHA/05/VOL.V/183, dated 9th November, 2015, that Omirin would recall that he “instituted an action at the Federal High Court, Lagos Division to upturn your impeachment in suit no: FHC/L/CS/1823/14; Rt. Hon. Adewale A. Omirin and 18 Others vs Hon. Dele Olugbemi and 13 Others, which was eventually struck out upon the filing of notice of discountenance by your humble self.
“Sir, while we will not comment on the constitutionality of the impeachment or otherwise, one point remains sacrosanct that there was an impeachment exercise against you on 20th November, 2014, upon which you instituted the matter referred to above.
“It must be borne in mind that whether your impeachment is legal or not is for the court of law to decide. But we, with due respect to your person, are helpless in the circumstances. Against this backdrop, the Present House of Assembly is not empowered by either the constitution or the Case Law to obliterate the records of Hon. Dele Olugbemi as the speaker between 20th November, 2014 and 5th June,2015.”
Oluwawole stated that the House had, however, resolved that “as a respected colleague”, its members would wish to accede to all the requests of Omirin as contained in his letter of reference, “if not for the fact that we are incapacitated by circumstances beyond our control as already expressed above.”
He added that the House might consider a pardon of the reasons that warranted Omirin’s impeachment, but not for “pseudo re-instatement for a period you never acted in that capacity.”