NBA Tackles Bello, Kogi Assembly Over Impeachment Of Deputy Gov
ABUJA – The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has reminded the Governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello, and the state House of Assembly that the Constitution of Nigeria and its provisions are sacrosanct and, therefore, cannot be violated at will.
The NBA was reacting to the alleged impeachment of the Deputy Governor of the state, Simon Achuba, by the state House of Assembly.
“This Constitution is supreme and its provisions shall have binding force on all authorities and persons throughout the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” NBA said.
A statement by Kunle Edun, National Publicity Secretary of NBA, on Monday stated that it was incumbent on all Nigerians, public officials and public institutions to ensure full compliance and adherence to the provisions of the constitution of Nigeria.
Therefore, the NBA enjoined Bello and members of the state House of Assembly not to deviate from the spirit and essence of the oath of allegiance (the 7th Schedule to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria) wherein they all swore to exercise absolute loyalty and adherence to the provisions of the constitution.
NBA said in view of the salient constitutional provisions, “It becomes worrying that steps are being reported to have been taken or about to be taken by the Kogi State House of Assembly to screen a successor to succeed Mr. Simon Achuba, preparatory to swearing in the new person in as the next Deputy Governor of Kogi State.
“The Nigerian Bar Association views these events with great concerns and urges all parties to exercise great caution.
“Any action to be taken by the interested parties should be guided by dictates of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the need to adhere to the rule of law.
“Parties concerned should also avoid any act that may pose a threat to the peace and security of Kogi State,” the NBA said.
It would be recalled that the Chief Judge of Kogi State in the exercise of his constitutional powers and pursuant to a resolution of the Kogi State House of Assembly, constituted a seven-man panel, chaired by Mr. John Baiyeshea, SAN to investigate the allegations of misconduct against the Deputy Governor.
The said investigation panel had since submitted its report to the Kogi State House of Assembly, finding the Deputy Governor not guilty and cleared him of all the allegations made against him, the NBA noted.
NBA reminded the governor and members of the Kogi State House of Assembly that section 188(8) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) provides that, “Where the panel reports to the House of Assembly that the allegations have not been proved, no further proceedings shall be taken in respect of the matter.