Falana hails Imo judiciary for refusing to swear in new deputy governor

Falana hails Imo judiciary for refusing to swear in new deputy governor

- The Imo state judiciary has been commended by a human rights activist, Femi Falana, for not allowing lawlessness in Imo state

- The Imo state judiciary upheld the basic tenets of the rule of law by stopping the swearing-in of deputy governor-designate for the state

- Eze Madumere was impeached by the state's House of Assembly and was to be replaced by Calistus Ekenze

Nigerian lawyer and human rights activist, Femi Falana (SAN), has hailed the Imo state judiciary for upholding the basic tenets of the rule of law by stopping the swearing-in of deputy governor-designate for the state, Calistus Ekenze.

Punch reports that despite a court order restraining the act, the Imo state House of Assembly went on to impeach Eze Madumere as deputy governor of the state, to be replaced by Ekenze.

Legit.ng gathers that Okorocha's request to swear-in Ekenze as the new deputy governor was said to have been declined by the chief judge of the state, Justice Paschal Nnadi.

Falana said: “A few days ago, Honourable Justice Ben Iheka of the Imo state high court granted an order of interlocutory injunction restraining the impeachment panel constituted by the chief judge of Imo state, the Honourable Justice Paschal Nnadi, from entertaining the allegations against Prince Ezeakonobi Madumere, the deputy governor of Imo state.

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“In a demonstration of brazen contempt of court, the House of Assembly ignored the valid and subsisting court order and hurriedly passed a resolution for the purported impeachment of Prince Madumere as deputy governor of Imo state.

“Instead of calling the legislators to order by asking them to purge themselves of contempt of court Governor Okorocha announced Calistus Ekenze as the new deputy governor. Governor Rochas Okorocha directed the chief judge of Imo state to swear in the so-called new deputy governor.

“However, the chief judge rightly turned down the contemptuous directive of Governor Okorocha to swear in Ekenze as deputy governor of the state.

“In a historic solidarity with the chief judge, all the other judges in high court of Imo state have resolved not to lend judicial weight to the subversion of the rule of law by the legislative and executive organs of the Imo state government.”

“While commending the Imo state judiciary for upholding the basic tenet of the rule of law we call on the Nigerian Bar Association and all democratic forces in the country to ensure that the order of the chief judge is fully complied with.

“Let the legislators and Governor Okorocha purge themselves of contempt of court by continuing to recognise Prince Madumere as the deputy governor of Imo state pending the determination of the pending suit before the state high court on the validity of the impeachment proceedings adopted by the House of Assembly of Imo state."

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Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that the deputy governor of Imo, Eze Madumere, was in the afternoon of Monday, July 30, impeached by the state’s House of Assembly. It was learnt that 19 out of the 27 members took the decision to get him parking.

The speaker of the House, Acho Ihim, announced that the impeachment was as a result of the outcome of a report by a seven-man panel constituted by the chief judge of the state to investigate allegations of gross misconduct against Madumere.

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Source: Legit.ng

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