Court Declares All Akwa Ibom Local Government Chairpersons Illegal
A court in Akwa Ibom State has declared as illegal, the local government caretaker committees in the state.
The 31 local governments in the state have been run for about two years now by chairpersons handpicked by the state governor, Udom Emmanuel.
A State High Court at the Abak Judicial Division presided by Justice Ezekiel Enang declared on Tuesday that the setting up of the caretaker committees was unlawful because there were no provisions for such within the Nigerian Constitution.
The court accordingly ordered Governor Emmanuel to dissolve the caretaker committees immediately.
A lawyer, Nsikak Akai of the Nsikak Akai and Associates, Abak, who filed the suit against the Akwa Ibom State government and Mr. Emmanuel, told PREMIUM TIMES that he checked through the Nigerian constitution but could not find any provisions that empower the governor to set up caretaker committees to run the local governments in the state.
Mr. Akai said he was happy for the judgment, describing it as a victory for democracy and the people of the state.
“For once, Akwa Ibom people can hold their governor to account subsequently whenever a governor intends to or even contemplate appointing caretaker committees in the state,” he said.
“The grievance we had was that the persons that were being appointed as caretakers were only answerable to their benefactors who see them as stooges, while the people bear the brunt.