Local Government Chairmen and their Vice have been sent packing in Imo State by the State Governor, Emeka Ihedioha.
In a statement signed by the Governor’s Chief Press Secretary, Chibuike Onyeukwu, the Governor also sacked Councillors and political appointees of the local governments. Boards of State Government Agencies were not spared.
The sack is reminiscent of a similar clean up of the local governments in 2011 by the then Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha.
While Okorocha’s action was unilateral which attracted widespread condemnation, Ihedioha said he anchored his action based on the recommendation made to him by the State House of Assembly.
Also affected in the dissolution spree were the State electoral commission, ISIEC and statutory boards of Government Agencies.
An Interim Management Commitee with a lifespan of six months will run the LGAs.
Part of the statement reads “The suspension is contained in the instrument signed by the Governor, pursuant to the recommendation made to him by the Imo State House of Assembly.
“This is in pursuant also, to the provisions of Sections 4, 5, and 6 of the Local Government Administration (Amendment) law, 2019 and S.73(3) of Imo State Local Government Administration Law No 15 of 2000 (as amended) and all other laws enabling him.
“The Governor has set up Interim Management Committees to manage the affairs of each Local Government.
“Consequently, the Directors of Administration and General Services(DAGS) of each Local Government have been directed to take over management, pending the confirmation of Interim Management Committees by the State Assembly.
“In a similar development, the Governor approved the dissolution and removal of the chairman and members of the Imo State Independent Electoral Commission (ISIEC).
“This is following a resolution supported by two-thirds majority of the State Assembly rendered on 6th June, 2019 seeking their removal from office. The action is also in accordance with the provisions of S.7(1) of the Imo State Independent Electoral Commission Law and all other extant laws of the State.
“The Commission will be reconstituted in due course to put in place the machinery for conducting a credible election into the local governments.
“The Governor further directs that these officers handover to the most senior civil servant in the Commission.
“In the over-riding public interest of the state, the Governor also approved the dissolution of all statutory boards, corporations, agencies and parastatals. This is in line with relevant enabling laws of the state.
“The chairmen and members are directed to handover to the most senior civil servant in their various establishments.