The Ekiti State House of Assembly on Thursday suspended its former Chairman, House Information Committee, Gboyega Aribisogan for 180 legislative days, with a condition that “his conducts henceforth will determine further actions on him.”
Aribisogan was also barred from holding any position of responsibility on behalf of the House of Assembly during the period
of his suspension, with all benefits associated with his office suspended, and that he must not be seen in and around the premises of the state House of Assembly within 1km radius.
The suspension was based on an adoption of the report and recommendation of the seven-man ad hoc panel constituted by the Speaker of the House, Rt Hon. Kolawole Oluwawole and submitted to the Ethics and Privileges Committee of the House.
The panel had investigated allegations bordering on gross misconduct and acts capable of destabilising the House made against Aribisogan by the House Leader of Business, Hon Tunji Akinyele in order to adhere to the principles of fairness and justice.
According to the House’s new Chairman, Committee on Information, Hon. Samuel Omotosho, who addressed journalists shortly after the House’s session on Thursday, Hon. Akinyele had accused Aribisogan of involving himself in acts capable of destabilising the peace and orderliness of the state by allegedly having unholy alliance and relationship with those who have
constituted themselves as enemies of the state government and presented false information for pecuniary gains, thereby casting aspersion on the House.
Presenting the committee report to the House at its sitting, Chairman of the Ethics Committee, Hon Fajana Ojoade, said it was established after thorough investigation through interviews, review of facts and unassailable evidence made available to the committee, that Aribisogan actually committed the offence.
Other members of the seven-man panel include; Sina Animasaun, Dr Samuel Omotoso, Akinniyi Sunday, Dele Fajemilehin, Cecelia Dada and Fasanmi Temitope.
The committee chairman said the Deputy Speaker, Hon Segun Adewumi also confirmed both in writing and orally that Aribisogan confessed to him at a popular hotel in Ado Ekiti on the evening of Friday, September 30, 2016 that he did meet with some elements that are against the state government in Lagos on Saturday, September 24, 2016, “in a manner that has rubbished the integrity and confidence that the Ekiti people have in the state House of Assembly.”
“Hon Segun Adewumi also said that truly, Hon Aribisogan visited Lagos to connive with opposition elements in an attempt to
destabilise Ekiti State.
“Instead of showing remorse and apologising for his embarrassing actions despite all overwhelming evidences, Hon. Aribisogan persisted in his shallow denials.
“It is hereby determined and declared that Hon. Aribisogan is guilty of these allegations and should be punished adequately to minimize the bad image his shady movements and conducts have caused this honourable house, while also serving as deterrent to others,” the report read in part.
Adopting the report, the House at its plenary resolved that Hon Aribisogan’s office should remain sealed throughout the
period of the suspension and that he should submit all properties of the House of Assembly to the Clerk.
Explaining the rationale behind the House’s decision to punish Aribisogan, Omotosho said that it is to serve as deterrent to anyone who might be nursing same act to desist from it and also show that: “we want to live above board in our ways. Aribisogan remains our brother and we are quick to forgive if he shows remorse and genuineness to change.”
Responding to the allegations against him, the embattled lawmaker had, on Wednesday, said: “The so-called audio was a superimposed voice-over to tarnish my reputation. At the panel’s sitting, there was a presentation of inaudible voice-over claiming that they recognized my voice and I discarded it as a cheap blackmail.”