In a surprising turn of events, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State has taken the decision to terminate the appointments of media aides attached to his deputy, Hon. Lucky Ayedatiwa. This development comes at a time when uncertainty looms over the possible dissolution of the State Executive Council (EXCO).
The tension within the Ondo State EXCO has been simmering for some time, with divisions becoming more apparent during Governor Akeredolu’s medical vacation in Germany. Since his return last week, certain members of the EXCO have expressed concerns over their tenure, interpreting the governor’s actions as a sign of impending changes within the council.
The dismissal of the deputy governor’s aides was formally communicated through a statement issued by the governor’s Chief Press Secretary, Richard Olatunde. In the statement, Governor Akeredolu directed the affected aides to promptly surrender all government-owned materials and assets in their possession to the acting Permanent Secretary of the Office of the Deputy Governor.
The dismissed media aides include Kenneth Odusola, who served as Press Secretary to the Governor, Okunniga Oladipupo, Special Assistant to the Governor for New Media, and Abayomi Samson Adefolalu, Special Assistant to the Governor for Photography.
The statement read, “All media aides appointed by the Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, CON, and seconded to the office of the deputy Governor, have been relieved of their appointments.”
“Similarly, the Press Crew attached to the office of the deputy governor has been disbanded. Consequently, all members of the Press Crew are to report back to their various ministries and stations.”
“Equally, the Ministry of Information and Orientation is directed to provide adequate coverage for the activities of the deputy governor’s office henceforth.”
The decision to dismiss the aides was reportedly rooted in allegations of insubordination and flagrant disregard for proper authority. An insider source within the government revealed that one of the deputy governor’s aides had used his WhatsApp status to criticize the governor, and a screenshot of this message was shared with the governor’s associates while he was abroad for medical treatment.
Additionally, another aide was accused of being involved in the dissemination of negative stories and information against Governor Akeredolu. The brewing discontent ultimately led to the governor’s action.
Efforts to obtain a response from Deputy Governor Ayedatiwa were unsuccessful, as he was reportedly away from the state capital on official duties at the time of inquiry.
As the situation continues to unfold, Ondo State remains in a state of heightened anticipation, with many speculating about potential changes within the State Executive Council.