It sounded unbelievable at first. The administration of change, which claims to run on strict adherence to rule of law, was accused to have approved invasion of the Ekiti Assembly complex. Its stout supporters balked at the accusation. It was impossible for the federal government to allow such illegal operation take place, they claimed.
Ekiti State Government had claimed many lawmakers were arrested and whisked away to Abuja after the clandestine operations. Days later, facts emerged that at least one lawmaker, Afolabi Akanni, was in the custody of Department of State Security (DSS).
This was after initial denials by the service. The DSS said it neither carried out the raid nor arrested any lawmaker as alleged. Akanni was eventually released from custody without any explanation as to why he was arrested or detained. He was only released after Governor Ayo Fayose alleged the lawmaker had died in custody.
Last Wednesday, 11 of the 25 lawmakers fled the state. They appeared to in Ibadan, capital of Oyo State to claim they fled following threats of arrests by the federal government.
The Deputy Speaker, Segun Adewunmi, told reporters: “We assembled here and decided to leave Ekiti. As at now, the governor cannot find any member of the House of Assembly. As we are here talking, others are out of the state.
“No amount of intimidation, arrest, detention, harassment and monetary inducement will make us dance to the tune of those whose only interest is to truncate the Fayose-led government and return to power through the backdoor.
“We have come here to alert the public about the new clandestine plot of the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led federal government to cripple the government of Ekiti State”.
Clearly, it appears the federal government is out for something in Ekiti State. Some chieftains of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have alleged there are plans to induce and intimidate the lawmakers to initiate impeachment plots against Fayose.
The Buhari’s administration has every reason to go after Fayose. He has been its most vociferous critic, its biggest enfant terrible. Fayose has torn every policy, move and decision of the administration to shreds, insisting it has nothing good to offer Nigerians.
An impeachment plot against him using federal might is not totally out of place. If Fayose is out of the way, the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) will be able to win one of the two states in the South West in the hands of PDP.
The Court option is out of the question because the Supreme Court has affirmed his victory over Minister for Solid Minerals, Dr Kayode Fayemi. The only available option is an impeachment plot that will pave the way for another governorship poll, or at least get Fayose out of government’s hair.
Getting him unseated will also spare the government from the scathing criticism of the outspoken Fayose. Many believe the APC-led federal government is just trying to also unsettle Fayose, who has been giving it hell.
The governor, a street-wise grassroots politician, has stood firm so far. He has held on tenaciously to the lawmakers, all of whom are in his control. He has matched the government move for move, displaying incredible mastery of propaganda to feather his nest.
But what is the federal government looking for in Ekiti? Why are security agencies hounding legislators? If there are any infractions they have committed, how come they have not been charged since they do not have immunity?
Why the desperation to intimidate and arrest the lawmakers? Why the constant invasion of their privacies? Why can’t Ekiti be left in peace to enjoy the governor they willingly voted for?
Is it out of place to criticize a government in a democracy?
So many questions begging for answers of sanity.