IAC: “Suspended Council Chairmen Cannot Import A Supreme Court Judgment For Ekiti State For Another State“
Attempts by suspended local government Chairmen in Imo State under the administration of former Governor Rochas Okorocha to take over the 27 local governments headquarters failed as they were resisted by the current Interim Management Committee Chairmen.
Reports by our correspondents from some of the local governments indicate that most of the suspended Chairmen, councilors and their supporters of the All Progressive Congress, APC had stormed the various council headquarters and made futile attempts to take over the local Governments.
They anchored their motive on the judgment of the Supreme Court which they claimed directed State Governors not to sack local government chairmen. They were however resisted by the present Council Chairmen of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP
A group, Imo Awareness Coalition, IAC, backed the resistance put up by the present Council Chairmen and faulted the forceful attempt of the suspended Chairmen to take over the local governments on the grounds that “they do not have a valid court order on paper to prove their claims”
IAC Publicity Secretary, Fidelis Echendu in his reaction to the development told our correspondent in Owerri, that “the claims of the suspended Chairmen do not hold water. You cannot import a Supreme Court judgment for Ekiti State for Imo State. That is never done anywhere.
“Besides, they were not sacked or suspended by the State Governor, Hon. Emeka Ihedioha. Their suspension was carried out by the 7th Imo State House of Assembly. Thus, their basis for a forceful take over of the local government headquarters is baseless and unwarranted.
However reports from some of local governments indicate the present Council Chairmen firmly resisted the attempt by the suspended Chairmen to take over the local government headquarters by force.
At Owerri Municipal, there was calm and peace as workers were seen carrying out their duties peacefully as at press time. Attempts by some supporters of the APC to gain entrance into the council premises was resisted by the Council Chairman, Ebere Chukwuemeka and PDP supporters including member representing Owerri Municipal State Constituency, Hon. Solomon Anukam.
Council Chairman, Ebere Chukwuemeka said there was no cause for alarm saying “Owerri municipal is intact”
At Aboh Mbaise Local Government, the suspended local government Chairman and Councilors initially made efforts to gain access into the Council Headquarters and succeeded. They were however allegedly dispersed by the Police who fired teargas to disperse them. A former Council Chairman was allegedly manhandled by security agents.
In Mbaitoli LGA, as early as 7am, suspended Council officials stormed the LGA Secretariat at Nworieubi but failed to gain entrance into the Council Headquarters.
In Ezinihitee Mbaise, there was calm as the Council staff were seen going about their duties lawfully as at the time of filing this report.
In Njaba LGA, there was peace and calmness as the Council Chairman was reported to have gone into a meeting with staff of the local government at the Secretariat. Unconfirmed report stated before the meeting, there was a free for all fight which had ensued between APC and PDP supporters but later quelled by security operatives.
In Owerri West, the sacked APC Chairman and his supporters were stopped before they could approach the Council gates, a source in the Council headquaters told this newspaper.
A National Daily however reported that a supervisor was shot dead in Isu local government area after a melee ensued between APC and PDP supporters.
ADDITIONAL REPORT: GREG IWU, UCHE ONWUDIWE