Following pressures from different political quarters in Ondo State, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu has formally written to notify the State House of Assembly that he is on leave and that his deputy, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, should act as governor.
The Speaker of the House, Olamide Oladiji, in a statement, said Mr Akeredolu embarked on the 21-day leave for medical treatment abroad from 7th June and that he will be away until 6th July.
According to the letter, the leave will extend to the 6th of July due to public holidays on June 12 (Democracy Day) and Eid el Kabir (28th and 29th June.
“The Governor, who had directed his Deputy, Hon.Lucky Orimisan Aiyedatiwa to act as the Governor while away, has assured of his resumption on the 6th of July, 2023,” the statement said.
The Speaker described the governor as a lover of peace and an apostle of the rule of law.
He wished him a speedy recovery and a joyful vacation.
Opposition parties, including the Social Democratic Party and the Peoples Democratic Party, had demanded that the governor transmit power to his deputy in line with the provisions of the Constitution due to his health challenges.
Mr Akeredolu has not been seen in his office for several weeks, and it is known that he has health challenges.
Although the governor’s aides admitted that he was indisposed, his condition and absence from duty led to political intrigues and a division in his cabinet, significantly impeding decision-making.
Some elements within the cabinet appeared to be uncomfortable with the deputy governor assuming power as acting governor for unknown reasons.
It was reported that forces in the corridors of power orchestrated several machinations to keep Mr Aiyedatiwa away from assuming the acting role as stipulated by the constitution.
Such devices include stories that he routinely beat his wife, an allegation the camp of the deputy governor denied and attributed to his detractors.
The state government has not disclosed the nature of Mr Akeredolu’s ailment and where specifically he will seek treatment abroad.