By Dayo Adesulu
The Speaker of the Ekiti State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Adeoye Aribasoye, says the legislative arm will no longer tolerate the refusal of officials and appointees in the executive arm to honour summons by lawmakers.
At a plenary of the House in Ado-Ekiti on Thursday, Speaker Aribasoye said the House could be forced by the action of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to begin to wield the big stick.
“The House may be compelled to invoke its constitutional powers against the erring officials and sanction them appropriately.
“Some members of the Executive and some officers in ministries, departments and agencies have failed to appear to answer questions from the lawmakers and bring documents required from them for legislative scrutiny in the interest of the people of the state.
“The house can bark and bite. We should not be taken for granted,” he said.
The Speaker warned those summoned to provide documents or to appear before a committee not to delay any further in doing so because the House may exercise the powers vested in it by the Constitution.
“We heard it on good authority that some MDAs were asked to produce some documents and some of them are foot-dragging.
“I want to advise them not to push the house. It is better for them not to push us to that level, they should not wait until we use our powers against them.
“This is a warning to all officers invited and those asked to produce one document or the other.
“The House of Assembly reaffirms its commitment to put the good people of Ekiti first. We will not yield to the demands of any individual or group seeking to serve their own agenda. Our duty is to represent the people.
“Furthermore, we want to clarify that no government official, particularly those in the executive branch, should underestimate our authority.
“To those summoned to provide documents or appear before a committee, we urge them not to delay. It is in their best interest to honourably comply before this house exercises its powers in accordance with the rules and laws.
“They should know that the law is above them. This is my note of warning and let it be heard everywhere,” the Speaker warned.