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Friday, July 12, 2024

Impeachment: Enugu Chief Judge Inaugurates Panel To Probe Onyebuchi



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By Larry Maintains


Enugu state Chief Judge, Hon Justice. Innocent Umezulike, has inaugurated a 7-man panel to investigate the embattled Deputy Governor of the State, Mr. Sunday Onyebuchi on the allegation of gross misconduct.


Justice Umezulike said his acting was in accordance with the constitutional provision which empowered him to inaugurate the panel to investigate the deputy governor, reminding the members that the constitutional or democratic history of Enugu state would never be complete without a chapter of the functions you are about to perform.


Umezulike also urged the members of the panel to perform the said constitutional function in such a way that would elicit commendation rather that condemnation,

Stating that the chairman and members of the panel have been very carefully chosen to ensure that there are no cleavages that could hinder the effective and impartial performance.


“I must inform you very significantly that the glue that holds you together is your uncommon integrity and non-partisanship in political activities. With this coalescence of chemistry and symmetry, I am entitled to hope that you would discharge your functions without fear of favour”.


“Your activities within this period would be monitored with a detective eye. And so, you must conduct yourselves like Caesar’s wife”.

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Chairman of the panel, Oraekeyi Uche Franklin while delivering his speech said their proceedings would be guided by the rules of the Enugu State House of Assembly.


Oraekeyi  noted that  the panel was not out to witch-hunt anybody, added that “we are not politicians and we fully appreciate the nature of our duty which is akin to that of an umpire.


“The powers and functions of this panel are as provided in Section 188 (7) (a) and (b) of the 1999 constitution as amended.


“In carrying out this assignment, we promise to ensure equity, fairness, justice and neutrality in order to justify the confidence reposed in us”.


The panel also affirmed that “for the benefit of the people that will appear before us, this panel is not a court of law; it is a fact finding panel of enquiry and as such, we shall not allow technicalities to be a clog in the wheel of our proceedings.


“Our proceedings shall be guided by the rules made by the House of Assembly of Enugu State pursuant to section 188 (7) of the 1999 constitution as amended.

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“We shall also use this medium to urge the members of the press to be responsible and professional in the discharge of your duties as they relate to informing the public about the proceedings of this panel”.


Our duty is to conduct an investigation on the charges handed over to us and make a report of our findings known to the House of Assembly of Enugu State”, he added.


Other members of the panel include Pastor Uluakanwa Oko, Elder Nnamdi Martin Onyenwuru, Barr. Marcel Ebele Eze, Mrs. Praise Mercy Anyim, Aroh Okwuchukwu Perfectus and Dr. Anthony Iguh.


The panel resumes sitting tomorrow, August 6.as 247ureports  recalls that members of the Enugu State House of Assembly had earlier served impeachment notice on the Deputy Governor, accusing him of rearing poultry in his official residence at the Enugu Government House.


They also accused Onyebuchi of refusing to represent Governor Sullivan Chime during the flag-off of the second Niger Bridge project, an allegation that has been faulted by video evidence, where the Deputy Governor was shown to be seated with his Anambra State counterpart at the event.

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