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Constitutional Crisis Looms As AGF Directs Bayelsa Chief Justice To Swear-In Wike

Rivers state governor Nyesom Wike

By Abdul Gafar Bello – Faced with the challenge of constitutional crisis, the Federal Government Tuesday directed the Bayelsa State’s Chief Justice to swear in Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, into Office on 29th May as the new Rivers State Governor, Friday, May 29, 2015.

Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohammed Adoke (SAN), in a statement explained the directive was in accordance with the provisions of section 185(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, as well as due to the existing vacuum in the Offices of the Chief Judge of Rivers State and the State’s President of the Customary Court of Appeal.

The development, Mr. Adoke established has made strict compliance to the requirements of section 185(1) and (2) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, virtually impossible.

He emphasized that in order to avert a likely constitutional breach in the State on 29th May 2015 “when the Governor-Elect, is expected to be sworn as Governor of Rivers State, I have requested the Chief Judge of Bayelsa State to administer the Oath of Allegiance and Oath of Office” in accordance with section 185(2) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999.
“The Oath of Allegiance and the oath of Office shall be administered by the Chief Judge of the State or Grand Khadi of the Sharia Court of Appeal of the State, if any, or President of the Customary Court of Appeal of the State, if any, or the person for the time being respectively appointed to exercise the functions of any of those offices in any State”, the Minister cited.

It would be recalled the State’s Governorship poll, just like the Presidential, held Saturdays, March 28 and April 11 respectively, was marred with high scale of electoral fraud and fatal violence, a situation that forced the APC and other parties in Rivers, to demand for an outright cancellation.

The electoral fraud was so glaring to the extent that the International observers expressed their reservation on the exercise, hence called for thorough investigations.

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