There are indications that Kogi State governor, Yahaya Bello and his Party, All Progressive Congress (APC) are in a dilemma over the move to have a new Deputy Governor in office.
The political atmosphere in the state is currently charged, as there the judiciary seems to be against the removal of the deputy governor, and attempts to swear-in someone else into that office.
The immediate past Deputy Governor, Elder Simon Achuba was on Friday impeached by the state House of Assembly, even though a report by a panel set up by the state’s Chief Judge, Justice Nasir Ajanah to investigate allegations against him exonerated Achiba of any wrong doing.
Even as Achuba was protesting the impeachment, and insisted that he remains the deputy governor of the confluence stage, the state House of Assembly had received a nominated name, Edward Onoja, as the incoming Deputy Governor.
However, Ripples Nigeria, gathered that the Judiciary had vowed not to swear in Onoja, insisting that the report of the investigation panel sent to the state House should be considered.
A reliable source told our correspondent that tension had started brewing in the state and the ruling party over the case.
He said the judiciary had vowed to turn their back on the swearing of Onoja.
According to him “Things are getting worse for Bello’s government and APC. It is one day, one problem or the other. As of yesterday, the judiciary said they would not swear in Onoja because their report on Achuba was neglected by the lawmakers. And you know what happens when the situation is like this.”
Meanwhile, findings by Ripples Nigeria from some party chieftains showed that the situation remained dicey.
The immediate past chairman of APC in the state, Chief Haddy Ametuo told our correspondent that “The Chief Judge will swear Onoja in on Monday. But before then, the lawmakers would sit to reconsider the appeal report before them on the matter. They will also work on judiciary position on the matter. But I can tell you that Onoja is already the deputy governor”.
Also, one of the governor’s aides, Gbenga Olorunpomi, said “The decision to swear in the new deputy or not is best known to the CJ. He has the decision. And I cannot speak for him. I work with the governor, and as far as I know, the status quo remains the pronouncements of the lawmakers on the impeachment. They said they had used their constitutional power to impeach Achuba and that was it”.
On his part, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Onogwu Muhammed, said the lawmakers would screen Onoja on Monday before any talk of swearing-in by the Judiciary.
“I wonder why people put the cart before the horse. The former deputy governor was Impeached on Friday and the name of the newly nominated person was transmitted to the state House by 3.30pm for screening before he can be confirmed and sworn-in. You don’t expect the lawmakers to sit on a weekend to perform official duty. They will seat on Monday to screen Onoja before the CJ can swear him in. When we get to that level we will know what will happen”, Onogwu said.
On the report of the judiciary investigative panel that exonerated Achuba of allegations leveled against him, the CPS said “That is between the judiciary and executive. Whatever happens between them, they will know how to settle it. And I don’t see that coming into play in the case of the incoming Deputy Governor”, the CPS said.
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