Al-Makura: Nasarawa CJ Ignores Assembly As Impeachment Panel Begins Sitting

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LAFIA – The Nasarawa State Chief Judge, Justice Suleiman Dikko may have ignored the directives of the state House of asking him to disband the seven-man panel he constituted to investigate Governor Tanko Al-Makura.

The development appears to be the decisive factor as the seven-member panel held its inaugural yesterday intent upon drawing up modalities and operational framework would guide its activities within the constitutional 3 it had to conduct its investigation.

Addressing newsmen after their sitting at the premises of the state Ministry for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs yesterday, the chairman of the Panel, Alhaji Yusuf Shehu Usman (Mni) said: “We have held inaugural today and mapped out schedules how we intend to carryout the investigation as vested us by the constitution”.

He explained further the schedule had to do with choice of venue, meetings and other modalities for deliberations, adding their sittings would be conducted as public sessions and not behind closed doors as earlier thought.

sittings would be public and all parties involved in this investigation would be given the opportunity to present their , call witnesses and tender relevant documents” he said.

Alhaji Usman stressed further that any might “wish to represent themselves personally or by legal practitioners of their choice”.

There are also rumours making rounds in the state over purported summoning of the CJ by the National Judicial Council (NJC) owing to a petition alleging constitutional breach in the constitution of the investigative panel was unfounded.

Contrary to insinuations, investigations revealed that both the premises of the NJC and the Supreme were under lock and key owing to the ongoing by the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN). In addition the Supreme was said to be break till September, casting further shadows the claims.

Rumours of the CJ’s summoning and possible suspension generated intense public interest in the state with many already expressing exasperation over PDP’s arm-twisting disposition towards opponents and those who did not serve their greedy interests.

Nasarawa govt berates over call for dissolution of probe panel

Meanwhile, has criticised the purported resolution passed by the Nasarawa State House of directing the Chief Judge of the State, Justice Suleiman Dikko, to reconstitute the recently inaugurated Panel to investigate the alleged gross misconduct levelled against Governor Umaru Tanko Almakura.

This position was made known in Lafia in a press signed by the Special Assistant (SSA) to the governor Public Affairs, Hon. Abdulhamid Kwarra.

According to him, Section 188 (subsection 5) of the 1999 constitution as amended, states that the Chief Judge of the state shall at the request of the Speaker of the House of Assembly appoint a panel of seven persons “who in his own opinion are of unquestionable integrity, not being members of any public service, legislative house or ”.

The Assembly in its resolution was contesting that Mohammed Sabo Keana is a registered member of the Peoples Democratic (PDP) while Rev. Joel A. Galadima is a member of the Christian Pilgrims Welfare Board whose appointment on the Panel was therefore flawed.

was of the opinion that the Assembly could probate and re-probate on a matter that was before His Lordship, the Chief Judge of the state.

On the contrary, the pointed out that “should the members of the state House of Assembly be aggrieved with the compliance of the Chief Judge of Nasarawa State to the provision of section 188 sub-section5, the right thing to do is for the House to go to the of law to challenge the composition of the investigative panel”.

The state government also drew attention to the fact that the sitting of the House in Karu local government was not in conformity with any democratic requirement because no rule of the House permitted the sitting of the Assembly anywhere in the state to conduct legislative affairs, adding that the sitting “is therefore ill-motivated, illegal and of no effect whatsoever”.

so the Supreme Court has made a definitive declaration that the House of Assembly can only conduct its legislative functions in legally designated place in the state capital (Balonwu Vs Obi 2007 NWLR PT1008/488),” the government explained.