The Ekiti State House of Assembly on Thursday suspended one of its members, Gboyega Aribisogan, for 180 legislative days, for allegedly being disloyal to Governor Ayo Fayose, and for associating with “opposition elements”.
The lawmaker, who is the former chairman, House Information Committee, was also barred from holding any position of responsibility in the house during the period of his suspension.
All benefits associated with his office were also suspended, just was barred from the assembly complex.
“His conducts henceforth will determine further actions on him,” the house declared.
The suspension was sequel to the adoption of the report and recommendations of a seven-member Ad Hoc panel constituted by the Speaker of the House, Kolawole Oluwawole, which was submitted to the Ethics and Privileges Committee.
The panel investigated allegations of “gross misconduct and acts capable of destabilising the House” made against Mr. Aribisogan by the House Leader, Tunji Akinyele.
Samuel Omotosho, who is now the new chairman of the house committee on information, told journalists on Thursday that Mr. Akinyele had “unholy alliance” with those who had constituted themselves as enemies of the state government and presented false information for pecuniary gains and cast aspersions on the house.
He said the action of Mr. Aribisogan was capable of destabilising the peace and orderliness of the state.
The chairman of the Ethics Committee, Fajana Ojoade, said after thorough investigation, it was established that Mr. Aribisogan committed the offence.
Mr. Ojoade said the Deputy Speaker, Segun Adewumi, confirmed both in writing and orally that Mr. Aribisogan confessed to him at a popular hotel in Ado Ekiti on the evening of Friday, September 30 that he did meet with some elements that were against the State Government in Lagos “in a manner that has rubbished the integrity and confidence that the Ekiti people have in the State House of Assembly”.
“Instead of showing remorse and apologising for his embarrassing actions despite all overwhelming evidences, Hon. Aribisogan persisted in his shallow denials,” he said.
“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,” he said.
The house also resolved that Mr. 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.
Responding to the allegations, Mr. Aribisogan denied the allegation, saying it was designed to tarnish his image.
“The so-called audio was a superimposed voice-over to tarnish my reputation,” he said.
“At the panel’s sitting, there was a presentation of inaudible voiceover claiming that they recognized my voice and I discarded it as a cheap blackmail.”