The Chief Judge of Kogi State, Justice Nasir Ajanah, has constituted a seven-man panel to investigate allegations of gross misconduct raised by the House of Assembly against the Deputy Governor, Elder Simon Achuba.
This, according to a statement on Friday, was made in line with the provisions of section 188 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) and after the vacation Court sitting in Lokoja, set aside its earlier ruling retraining the CJ from constituting a committee to investigate the deputy governor, who had approached it, for an order of interim injunction to restrain the house of assembly, the CJ and the state Attorney-General, from debating or considering the report directing the CJ to set up a committee to investigate the allegations leveled against him.
He further sought to restrain the defendants from taking further steps in investigating the said allegations, pending the determination of the case.
Justice Abdul Nicodemus Awulu, in his ruling of August 20, gave an ex parte order of interim injunction restraining the CJ from setting up the committee, while the other defendants were restrained from debating or considering the report that recommended that an investigative committee be set up, and from taking any further step in investigating the allegations leveled against the deputy governor.
The Assembly consequently applied for an order vacating and/or discharging the interim order of injunction granted, for lack of jurisdiction.
The judgement was set aside, following which the CJ constituted the panel with an order emanating from his chambers:
“Pursuant to Section 188(5) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) and all other enactments enabling me in that behalf, I Hon. Justice Nasir Ajanah, Chief Judge of Kogi State, hereby constitute a panel to investigate the allegations of gross misconduct leveled against the Deputy Governor of Kogi State, Elder Simon Achuba, by the Kogi State House of Assembly.
“The said allegations are contained in the notice of allegation of gross misconduct dated 7th August, 2019 attached to a letter from the speaker of the House of Assembly”.
Members of the panel include Mr. John Baiyeshea (SAN) (Chairman), Hajia Bilikisu Abdulmalik Basher, Mr. William A. Aliwo, Canon Z. A. Asun, Alhaji Isa Adeboye, Mr. Muhammed A. Aikoye and Mr. Ada Shaibu. Mr. Bamidele Aina while the Deputy Court Registrar (DCR), Special Duties at the High Court will serve as secretary to the panel.
The Chief Judge concluded that: “by virtue of section 188(7)(b) of the 1999 constitution, the panel has three (3) months within which to submit its report to the assembly, while the panel will be inaugurated on Monday, the 26th day of August, 2019 by 11am at the Conference Hall, High court Of Justice headquarters.”