Ondo State Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, who has been absent from the public eye due to illness, finds himself in a situation where politicians within the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) are tactfully attempting to gain political advantage from his health challenges. His deputy, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, appears to be caught in the midst of these political maneuvers.
While some unconfirmed sources said the governor has been flown abroad for medication, some said he is currently in Ibadan where his personal doctors are attending to him.
In recent weeks, Aiyedatiwa has come under serious character assassination from within his party just to make sure he did not succeed Akeredolu as required by constitution should the governor’s health situation deteriorate further.
The first kite flown by this powerful cabal within the administration was the allegation that deputy governor regularly assaulted his wife, an allegation he has come out to vehemently denied.
They also accused the deputy governor of being overly ambitious to replace Akeredola, and has been having clandestine meetings with some commissioners all in bid to persuade them to declare the governor unfit.
According to a prominent member of the APC in the Sunshine State, some of the politicians love the Governor to return, not because of the love they have for him but to prevent his deputy governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa from constitutionally becoming the governor, should the governor resign.
“Their thought is that if Aiyedatiwa becomes the governor, in case the governor resigns, he (Aiyedatiwa) would be the sitting chief executive officer of the state, they believe he would do everything humanly possible to get the party ticket and eventually win the main election and become the governor in 2024. So they are using everything they have to avoid this from happening. They are really playing the game, “the chieftain stressed.
Those who are conversant with the happenings in the Ondo State politics revealed that there are three groups battling for the soul of the State. Our source said: “There are three basic groups, who are fighting for the soul of the Sunshine State. They are those loyal to him.
Unfortunately, there is also his wife Betty, and his first son, Babajide. The third group is the Deputy Governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, and his loyalists.
“The governor’s son, Babajide is seen in some circles as the de facto governor and also heads an agency of government in charge of monitoring of projects. Because of that, he has an overbearing attitude. Those who are opposed to the Deputy Governor have succeeded in ingraining it in the heart of the governor that his deputy is over ambitious.
It will be recalled that his wife threatened a serving member of the State Executive Council not long ago.
Mrs. Anyanwu-Akeredolu had cried out that her husband was on sickbed after eating a “concoction” from one of his female aides, Bunmi Ademosun. In the leaked audio file, Mrs. Anyanwu-Akeredolu accused Ms. Ademosun, the special adviser to the governor on Multilateral and Inter-Governmental Affairs, of “sneaking” to give Mr. Akeredolu the concoction to eat.
Meanwhile, Vice Chairman, Aketi-Ayedatiwa Medical Committee, 2020, and Leader, Aketi Medical Team, 2016, Dr. Olusegun Akeredolu, have called on the people of the State to rise up and stop the illegality. He said that the Umar Musa Yar’ Adua scenario must not be allowed to repeat itself.
He said: “In the same way that President Umar Musa Yar’Adua’s true state of health was unknown in 2010, no one knows the whereabouts of Gov. Akeredolu Oluwarotimi SAN of Ondo State. The signals so far show all is not well with the number one citizen in the Sunshine state.
“The desperation among the political class is a pointer that H.E. Lucky Aiyedatiwa needs the support of Ondo State indigenes and security must be beefed up. Otherwise, these desperadoes don’t mind destroying the work of our past heroes and turn the state into another theater of war.
“Ondo State people must stand up and ensure the rule of law prevails. We must see Aketi, his current state of health must be known, and the Sunshine State must not be ruled by Aketi’s proxies like Mrs. Betty Anyanwu Akeredolu or his son, Babajide Akeredolu.
A source in the state alleged of a move to impeach the Deputy Governor in order to prevent him from assuming the office of the governor in case of permanent incapacitation or death, saying that was the reason the governor did not write to the House of Assembly to transmit power to the Deputy Governor.
This development came as opposition political parties, including the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Social Democratic Party (SDP) asked the state government to declare to the public, the health status of Akeredolu.
The PDP and the SDP blamed the governor’s aides and the state government in general for allegedly concealing the health status and the whereabouts of the state’s number one man.
SDP in a statement issued by its state chairman, Stephen Adewale said there was a need for the governor to hand over to his deputy in acting capacity for effective running of the state.