The Governor elect of Abia state, Uche Ogah has slammed the Chief Judge,
Theresa Uzoukwu for refusing to swear him in.
Reports say Uzoukwu went into hiding following pressures from different quarters to swear in Ogah.
The Governor was issued a certificate of return by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), following a court ruling ordering Governor Okezie Ikpeazu to vacate office.
Ogah said the refusal of the state Chief Judge to swear him in, is an insult on the rule of law, adding that her action was capable of causing instability in Abia.
The Governor elect also described the court injunction which Governor Ikpeazu obtained, as a black market injunction.
Ogah, in a statement issued by his Special Adviser on Public Communications, Monday Onyekachi Ubani, said:
“I am not ignorant of the black market injunction allegedly obtained by Dr Ikpeazu at Osisioma Ngwa High court restraining the Chief Judge of Abia state from swearing in Dr Ogah. That interim order was premised on Section 143 of the Electoral Act which is only applicable to judgements obtained in Election Tribunals, but not in pre-election matters. It is a laughable ruling not worth the paper it was written. For God’s sake, a High Court in Abia is a court of coordinate jurisdiction with a Federal High Court and so any order given by such court to contradict an earlier order of the same court is ipso facto null and void. It is only a higher court that has the legal capacity to reverse the earlier order or judgement.
“In a pre-election matter the enforceability of a court judgement is immediate as the losing side in the legal argument, in this case, Dr Ikpeazu, was never adjudged to have been qualified to contest the election in the first place while in a post-election matter the mandate enjoyed by an incumbent subsists until the tribunal or appellate courts rule otherwise.
“Failure or delay to swear Dr Ogah in as the duly elected Governor of Abia state is an unqualified affront to the rule of law and constitutional governance in a true democracy, and an act that is capable of undermining the peace and stability of the state. Dr Ikpeazu has been duly removed as Abia state Governor and not amount of legal shenanigans and illegal public holidays will derail the law of the land taking full effect. Dr Ogah will be sworn-in in due course so as to avoid the dangerous power vacuum that currently exists in Abia state, and for him to begin the urgent task of empowering Abians with his laudable developmental programmes already lined up.”