Lucky Aiyedatiwa has been sworn-in as Governor of Ondo State following the death of the governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu.

He was sworn in on Wednesday by the State Chief Judge, Olusegun Odunsola at an event that took place at the Cocoa Conference Hall, Governors office Alagbaka, Akure.

Mr Aiyedatiwa, in his inaugural speech, declared a three-day mourning, with all flags to be flown at half mast, effective from Thursday 28th December 2023.

Mr Akeredolu died in the early hours of Wednesday after a long battle with leukaemia and prostrate cancer.

Aiyedatiwa was acting governor before his latest elevation as Governor.

He became Acting Governor when Akeredolu took a 21-day medical vacation on the 13th of December.

Mr Aiyedatiwa said he accepted the governorship responsibility with a heavy heart following the unfortunate loss of Mr Akeredolu.

He also said he would be committed to the welfare of the people in furtherance of Mr Akeredolu’s legacies.

“The death of our Governor is indeed a devastating shock to us all, as we have all been praying earnestly for his quick recovery and subsequent safe return to Ondo State, having embarked on another medical leave on Wednesday, 13th December, 2023. Indeed, there is no armour against fate, death lays his icy hand on kings,” he said.

“Permit me to use this opportunity to condole with the immediate and extended family of Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu, SAN, CON, HRM Oba Gbadegesin Ogunoye III, the Olowo of Owo, the people of Owo and indeed the entire people of Ondo State over this monumental loss.

“The demise of Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu, SAN, CON is
indeed a great loss to me as an individual as our relationship dated back to many years ago, having closely worked with him when his gubernatorial journey started in Year 2012.

“The loss then did not affect
our relationship as we continued to maintain close political and personal relationship which climaxed in Year 2020 when he graciously picked me
as his running mate for his Second Term as Governor of Ondo State.

“Governor Akeredolu was a man of courage and conviction who always stood for the truth even at his own detriment. I remember vividly during the time when we had a case in court challenging our Second
Term victory. He still pursued the matter of emplacing a strong security network for the people of the Southwest codenamed ‘Amotekun Corps’.

“The People of Ondo State and the entire people of the Southwest will be
eternally grateful for this bold act which has greatly improved the security architecture in the Region and reduced incidents of kidnapping, banditry and other acts of criminalities to the barest minimum especially in Ondo State.

“His many legacies in the health sector, infrastructural development, education, industrial development as symbolised in the Ondo-Linyl Industrial Hub, Ore, his innovation in Ondo State Entrepreneurial Development Agency, his Tech Hub, etc will be difficult to surpass.

“The events which culminated in today’s ceremony is a watershed in the history of Ondo State as this is the first time we are having a transition in an administration.

“Today’s event has placed a burden on all of us to pull together and stay together as one, because we have the onerous responsibility to continue to sustain the legacies of Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu, SAN, CON, which was good governance, properly called. 

“Our leader and Governor, during his time embarked upon several landmark projects, many of which have been completed and several ones ongoing. We now have the responsibility to complete them. It is to the credit of Arakunrin Akeredolu, that the State now has a flyover in Ore, while the one in Akure is ongoing.

“It is necessary for us to acknowledge with pride the wonderful achievements
and legacies of Arakunrin Akeredolu. His records of performance are
monumental and unprecedented.
I want to assure the people of Ondo State that under my watch, this administration shall continue to advance the welfare of the people. We shall always place the people first in every decision we take.

“It is my prayer, once more, that God Almighty shall grant the family and the
people of Ondo State the fortitude to bear this irreparable loss. Let me use this opportunity to convey our deep appreciation to Mr. President and Commander-in-Chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, GCFR, the National Chairman of our party, His Excellency Alhaji Adbullahi Ganduje, the leaders of the party both at the National and State levels, the elders of our State, for providing succour and support to our State at this critical time.

“Ladies and gentlemen, I want to urge the people of Ondo State to continue to remember us in their prayers as we continue to emplace good governance in our dear State. May God continue to bless the people of Ondo State.”

It will be recalled that Mr Aiyedatiwa narrowly escaped being impeached shortly after the Governor returned from his medical leave in September.

The late governor sacked his media aides and the house of Assembly was stirred to serve him a notice of impeachment.

He barely survived through the intervention of the courts which restrained the governor and the assembly from proceeding with the Impeachment.

It also took the intervention of President Bola Tinubu to further quel the political crisis threatening the peace of the government and people of Ondo State.

Mr Aiyedatiwa was accused of disloyalty to the governor, and was slammed with the allegation of gross misconduct. He however denied all the allegations.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *