Edo deputy Gov, Shaibu formally declares interest in 2024 governorship

Impeachment: Edo CJ constitutes panel to probe allegations against Philip Shaibu 

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The Chief Judge (CJ) of Edo State, Justice Daniel Okungbowa, has constituted a seven-man panel to investigate the allegations levelled against the embattled state’s deputy governor, Comrade Philip Shaibu, by the state House of Assembly as part of the processes initiated by the Assembly to impeach the deputy governor.

The panel, known in political parlance as the “Committee of Seven Wise Men” , was constituted on Friday, March 22, 2024, vide a statement, with reference number: CR/4837 /Vol. I/131, endorsed by the Chief Registrar of the Edo State High Court, Mr. B. O. Osawaru, and is headed by a retired justice, Justice S.A. Omonua.

In the statement empanelling the committee, the Chief Registrar stated that the CJ was acting in accordance with the powers vested on him by “Section 188(5) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).”

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The text of the statement by the Chief Registrar reads:

“This is to bring to the notice of the general public that in line with Section 188(5) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended), the Honourable the Chief Judge of Edo State, Honourable Justice D.I. Okungbowa has constituted the PANEL OF SEVEN PERSONS to investigate the allegations contained in the impeachment notice against the Deputy Governor of Edo State, Rt. Honourable Philip Shaibu.

“The said Panel of Seven Persons is comprised of the following

persons:

  1. Hon. Justice S.A. Omonua (Rtd.) – Chairman
  2. Professor Violet Aigbokhaebo- Member
  3. Professor Boniface Onomion Edegbai -Member
  4. Professor Theresa Akpoghome – Member 
  5. Mr. Oghogho Ayodele Oviasu – Member
  6. Surv. Dr. Andrew Oliha- Member
  7. Mr. Idris Abdulkareen- Member.”

Recall that the Edo State House of Assembly, had on Tuesday, March 19, 2024, via a resolution passed by 19 out of the 24 members, directed the CJ to constitute a seven-man panel to investigate Shaibu.

The same day, Shaibu approached an Abuja Federal High Court, asking the court, through an ex-parte motion, to restrain the assembly, the CJ and his principal, Governor Godwin Obaseki, from taking further action on the impeachment process pending the determination of the substantive matter before the court.

In the motion dated and filed on March 18, the deputy governor, through his lawyer, Professor Oladoyin Awoyale, also joined the Edo State Government, the Speaker of the House of Assembly, the Clerk of the Assembly, the Director General of the Department of State Security (DSS) and the Inspector General of the Police 

The court, presided over by Justice James Omotoso, however, turned down the request, insisting rather that all parties be put on notice, but granted the request that the parties be served by substituted means. It adjourned the matter to April 15, 2024.


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