Imo Governor Signs Two New Bills Into Law

Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma addresses residents of the state in his Easter message at the Government House in Owerri on April 12, 2020.

 

The Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma, has signed two new bills into law which was passed by the State House of Assembly.

The bills are “Imo Waste Management Agency bill” and the “Consolidation of Property and Land Use Charges Bill”.

Governor Uzodinma while accenting to the bills at the Government House in Owerri, explained that the “Waste Management Agency Bill will regulate the activities of the agency, curb indiscriminate dumping of refuse within the state and prosecute offenders who are found guilty of violating the law.

He added that the bill will also enable the government to take a cue from civilised countries where waste is converted into wealth.

The second bill, which is on the Consolidation of Property and Land Use Charges and other matters will help bring sanity to land acquisition and identification of landowners in the state.

The governor further noted that the law will make it compulsory for recertification of all Certificates of Occupancy (C of Os) in line with an automation process already in place.

Building Collapse: Imo Govt To Revoke CofO, Prosecute Contractor

File photo of Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma

 

The Imo State Government has vowed to prosecute the erring contractor as well as revoke the Certificate of Occupancy of the land, following the collapse of an 8-storey building in Owerri.

Governor Hope Uzodinma revealed this on Friday while visiting the site of the collapsed building.

According to him, it is quite unfortunate that the developers violated the lockdown order of the state Govt by embarking on construction work during the lockdown.

He also lamented that the developers did not follow the authorized plan of the state government on the building.

The governor also commiserated with the families of those affected.

This comes as emergency officials recovered two more dead bodies from the rubble of the collapsed building.

A team of rescue officials comprising the Red Cross and Owerri Capital Development Authority evacuated the bodies from the scene of the incident today.

The number of persons killed in the building collapse rose to four following the death of two persons reported on Thursday.

While 12 people have been rescued, many are still trapped including a woman and her two kids.

COVID-19: NCDC Boss Visits Imo, Worried Over No Records Of Cases In State

NCDC Director-General, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu holds a meeting with Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma in Owerri on April 18, 2020.

 

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has expressed worry over the yet-to-be-identified case of the COVID-19 pandemic in Imo State.

NCDC Director-General, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu expressed the worry on Saturday during a visit to Governor Hope Uzodinma at the Government House in Owerri, the state capital.

Addressing the governor, Ihekweazu said he is worried because the people of the state travel a lot and might be at risk of importing the virus into the state.

“Your Excellency, the Executive Governor of Imo State. We are a little bit worried. We know that our people travel a lot.

“We are happy that there hasn’t been a case so far. There are two ways. To be fully happy, we have to be sure that we are looking hard enough not finding.

“This outbreak is a bit of a preganant (woman). Sometimes, you will be asking people are you pregnant or not? Eventually it will come out,” he said.

In his response, Governor Uzodinma commended the NCDC team for supporting the efforts made by his administration to ensure the virus does not find its way into the state.

He however appealed to the agency to strengthen the COVID-19 team set up by the state government in preventing the spread of the virus.

“We are calling on you to help us strengthen our people so that we can be prepared fully in the event this thing finds its way into Imo State.

“I think what the World Health Organisation has done in terms of awareness and sentisation, we want to commend that. We also encourage them to continue,” he said.

Ayade, Ortom, Uzodinma, Ganduje Mourn Abba Kyari

Ben Ayade                        Samuel Ortom                      Hope Uzodinma                  Abdullahi Ganduje

 

 

Four more governors have mourned the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari, who died from complications caused by coronavirus (COVID-19).

In separate statements on Saturday, the governors of Cross River, Benue, Imo, and Kano States condoled with President Muhammadu Buhari over the death of his aide.

Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River said he was utterly depressed by the sad news of Kyari’s death, saying his departure was a great loss to the nation.

“We have lost a great statesman, a consummate professional, and an exceptionally brilliant mind. Our nation has lost one of its best,” the governor said in a statement.

[READ ALSO] He Never Sought ‘Cheap Gratification Of The Crowd’: Buhari Reacts To Abba Kyari’s Death

According to him, Kyari was a patriotic statesman who was diligent and meticulous, uncommonly accommodating, and a great listener who was ever receptive to anyone who came across him.

“My heart and prayers are with the family at this very difficult moment. I pray for the repose of Mallam Kyari’s soul,” Governor Ayade added.

On his part, Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, sent condolences to the President on behalf of the government and people of the state.

He said the demise of a loved one such as a trusted aide can be devastating, noting that death was an inevitable end for which mankind must prepare at all times.

Abba Kyari Testifies At President Election Tribunal
Chief of Staff to the President, Mr Abba Kyari, attends the Federal Executive Council meeting at the State House in Abuja on July 25, 2018. The Presidency said Kyari died on April 17, 2020.

 

 

Governor Ortom also extended his sympathies to the Kyari family and prayed that God would grant the late Chief of Staff eternal rest.

For the Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma, Kyari was a pan-Nigerian who devoted his energy and time to the service of his country.

He condoled with President Buhari, Nigerians as well as the government and people of Borno State on the unfortunate loss.

Governor Uzodinma prayed God for the peaceful repose of the soul of the late Chief of Staff and grant the President, the family of Kyari, and his numerous friends and associates the fortitude to bear the loss.

Joining his colleagues, Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State prayed for Allah’s forgiveness and blessing for Kyari whom he described as highly reserved and loyal Chief of Staff to the President.

“On behalf of the government and good people of Kano State, I am commiserating with the President and Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari, the Federal Government, his families, and the entire Nigerians over the death of Malam Abba Kyari,” he said.

The governor added, “May Allah see him through in the hereafter. May he meet his Lord, with all cleanliness and may Allah give him everlasting peace.”

Governor Hope Uzodinma Tests Negative For COVID-19

Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma addresses residents of the state in his Easter message at the Government House in Owerri on April 12, 2020.

 

Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma has tested negative for COVID-19.

Disclosing this on his Facebook handle on Monday morning, the governor said the test conducted on him to check if he has contracted the coronavirus disease has shown negative.

READ ALSO: Nigeria Records Five New COVID-19 Cases, Total Infections Now 323

Uzodinma said with the result showing he is free of the virus, the state government will continue to do everything humanly possible to stop COVID-19 pandemic from finding its way into the state.

He also asked residents of the state to continue to observe all the precautionary measures put in place by the state government this period.

Pray That Nigeria Triumphs Over COVID-19, Uzodinma Tells Christians

Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma addresses residents of the state in his Easter message at the Government House in Owerri on April 12, 2020.

 

Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma has asked Nigerians, particularly Christians to pray that Nigeria triumphs over COVID-19 pandemic that has ravaged the world.

The governor disclosed this on Sunday in a statewide Easter message broadcast in Owerri the Imo state capital.

According to him, indigenes of the state to join hands with his administration in the fight against the deadly virus irrespective of their political or religious differences.

“You will do well to savour the joy of Easter for Christ is risen indeed and his resurrection is the assurance that we need that after the tribulation comes the shout of joy and hallelujah.

“The truth is that the hard and painful decisions that we have taken to prevent and contain the incursion of the virus into Imo State were forced on us purely by circumstances beyond our control.

“These measures have been applied with good results by other countries that have suffered the scourge of coronavirus,” he said.

READ ALSO: Easter: Ayade Sues For Renewed Faith In God

Uzodinma noted that for the battle to be won against coronavirus, the citizens should pray fervently to God for divine intervention.

Similarly, he wants the masses to emulate the virtues of Jesus Christ and bear the present COVID-19 hardships with the uncommon patience and perseverance with which Christ bore his passion and tribulations while on earth.

Speaking further, the governor said he is confident that in no distant time Nigeria will win the battle against the virus just as Christ triumphed over death.

While urging Christians in the state to observe the Easter service either online or through the relevant electronic medium, he advised them to continue to adhere strictly to laid down guidelines in order to prevent contracting the deadly coronavirus disease.

COVID-19: Imo Govt To Shut Down All Markets, Borders

Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma

 

The Imo state government says it will close down all markets and borders into the state as precautionary measures to contain the spread of coronavirus disease.

Briefing journalists on Wednesday at the Government House in Owerri, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Declan Emelumba said the closure will be effective by Friday, March 27.

Emelumba reiterated that all educational institutions in the state be shut down till further notice, stressing that more test and isolation centres will be established by the state government to ensure that people are tested.

READ ALSO: Presidency Confirms That President Buhari Tested Negative For Coronavirus

He explained that the government will provide hand sanitizers and test kits at all entry and exit into the state.

Although the state has not yet recorded any case of COVID-19, the Commissioner stated that Governor Hope Uzodinma’s administration will enforce compliance to all measures being put in place by the government to ensure that the deadly virus doesn’t find its way.

Imo Govt Shuts Down All Tertiary Institutions, Schools

(file photo) Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma addresses journalists

 

The Imo State government has ordered the closure of all tertiary institutions, primary and secondary schools in the state till further notice over the Coronavirus outbreak.

Addressing residents of the state during a broadcast on Saturday, Governor Hope Uzodinma said an isolation centre has been set up in Owerri to quarantine any person who tests positive to the virus.

The governor also asked relevant authorities to ensure strict compliance with the directives.

According to him, arrangements have been put in place to test all passengers arriving at the Sam Mbakwe International Cargo Airport of symptoms of the Coronavirus.

READ ALSO: Nigeria’s Index Coronavirus Patient Discharged

He explained that any passenger that manifests signs of the symptoms will first be taken to a bay that has been set up at the airport for further examination.

The move comes 24 hours after the governor constituted a nine-member committee on the prevention of Corona Virus disease (COVI-19).

The committee headed by former Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC); Professor Maurice Iwu is to take proactive measure to prevent the spread of the disease which is ravaging many parts of the world.

Those Calling For Oshiomhole’s Removal Will Fail – Uzodinma

Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma speaks to journalists. (file photo)

 

Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State has reacted to the purported removal of the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr Adams Oshiomhole.

Speaking to journalists on Friday in Owerri, the state capital, Uzodinma said those calling for Oshiomhole’s removal will fail.

According to him, patriotic forces within the ruling party will not allow Oshiomhole to be humiliated out of office.

He also accused some members of the party of working with the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to create a crisis.

“Many of us, leaders of the party, are aware that those clamouring for the chairman’s removal are working with the PDP to destabilise the party but they will fail.

“We will not allow them to humiliate our National Chairman out of office through illegal means or allow any action that will bring the party to public ridicule,” Uzodinma said.

While insisting that the APC chairman has not done anything to warrant his removal, the governor vowed that every arsenal will be deployed to ensure that the plan of those plotting his removal is foiled.

READ ALSO: Sanusi Arrives In Lagos From Nasarawa

Speaking further, Uzodinma said the guidelines of the party are clear on how the National Chairman can be removed from office which must be through the National Executive committee (NEC), adding that anything outside that was illegal.

He noted that the plot to remove Oshiomhole is a clear case of witch hunt otherwise those behind it would have come through the proper channel which is the party’s NEC, but they have refused to do so because they know they have no genuine case against him.

The governor also wondered why a genuine APC member will want to remove Oshiomhole who, according to him, has done so well for the party.

Rather than his removal, Uzodinma wants party members to come together, savour their victory at the last elections and plan how to consolidate for the future.

Angry Imo Youths Attack Governor Uzodinma’s Convoy

 

Angry youths in Imo State are said to have attacked the convoy of the Imo state governor, Mr Hope Uzodinma.

The attack took place during his visit to Mmahu in Ohaji Egbema Local Government Area of the state on Sunday.

Governor Uzodinma had visited the community to pay a condolence visit to families of some victims who lost their lives during a truck crash there.

Police authorities in the state say some unidentified persons attacked the governor’s car while he was inside the palace of the traditional ruler of the community addressing stakeholders.

READ ALSO: 16-Year-Old Girl Arrested For Stabbing Man To Death

But the state government in a different statement said the governor was not attacked but some aggrieved youths who wanted him to address them on the activities of some oil companies in the area threw a stone at the governor’s official vehicle where they were parked and in the process smashed the back glass.

The statement adds that the person who threw the stone has been arrested.

Let’s Develop Imo Together, Uzodinma Tells Opposition After Supreme Court Verdict

Imo APC Faction Expels Hope Uzodinma
A file photo of Governor Hope Uzodinma.

 

 

The Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma, has called on members of the opposition party in the state to join the movement to make the state better.

He made the call on Tuesday in an interview with reporters in Owerri, the Imo State capital in south-east Nigeria.

The governor’s remark was in reaction to the verdict of the Supreme Court on the application to review its judgement on the March 9, 2019 governorship election in the state.

In the suit, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Emeka Ihedioha asked the court to re-examine its judgement which removed him from office after about 10 months.

Ihedioha faulted the declaration of Uzodinma as the Imo State governor and asked the court to return him back into office.

The application was, however, dismissed in a majority judgement of a seven-man panel of judges led by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Tanko Muhammad.

Six of the judges on the panel agreed with the apex court’s verdict while Justice Chima Nweze gave a dissenting judgment, stressing that the decision ought to be reviewed.

 

Political Evangelism

Justice Nweze held that the court has the power to overrule itself in a situation where such a judgment was not seen to have met the justice of the case.

He said Uzodinma misled the court in arriving at the judgment which removed Ihedioha from office, saying there was no evidence that the governor satisfied the required spread to have been declared the winner of the election.

The judge informed his colleagues on the panel that the judgment upholding Uzodinma’s victory in the election would continue to haunt Nigeria’s electoral jurisprudence.

Moments after the judgement, Uzodinma said the verdict reflected the true feelings of the people of Imo state who voted him into office.

He also commended the judiciary for standing by the truth and promised that his administration would continue to deliver good governance and prosperity to the people of the state.

Governor Uzodinma called on his political opponents to close ranks and join him in developing the state in the interest of the people.

He added that as the only state in the South East with the All Progressives Congress (APC) in power, he would embark on political evangelism to ensure the party wins more states in the region.

UPDATES: Hearing Of Ihedioha’s Application At The Supreme Court

A crowd of lawyers, politicians, and others gather at the Supreme Court in Abuja on January 14, 2020. Photo: Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.

 

The Supreme Court is hearing the application filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Mr. Emeka Ihedioha, over the January 14, 2020 judgment which sacked him as the Governor of Imo State.

Mr. Ihedioha and the PDP, in their applications, claim that the judgment of the apex court which installed Senator Hope Uzodinma as the Governor of Imo State was obtained by fraud.

They are therefore praying the seven-man panel of the apex court to review and set aside the judgment.

The panel, headed by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Tanko Muhammed, is currently hearing the application.

Lawyer to Mr. Ihedioha, Chief Kanu Agabi, in his argument, claims that fraud is evident in the judgment, as the appellant, Hope Uzodinma, claimed he was excluded from 388 polling units but tendered results from only 366 polling units

He adds that with the addition of votes from 388 polling units in favour of Senator Uzodinma exceeds the total number of accredited voters by 129,000 votes.

Countering the argument, Lawyer to Senator Hope Uzodinma says the application to revisit, review or set aside the judgment of the court is an incompetent one lacking in merit.

He argues further that the apex court lacks the jurisdiction to sit on appeal over any judgment delivered by the court except where cases of typographical errors or slips are noticed in the said judgment are established and in this case, no such errors have been established.

Mr Damian Dodo adds that the appellant approached the apex court in the face of compelling evidence that Senator Hope Uzodinma won the election, and therefore, has asked the court to dismiss the application.

Supreme Court has stood down Emeka Ihedioha’s application after listening to arguments from all the parties.

The apex court will deliver judgment by 3pm later today.

The judges resume to give judgement and Justice Olukayode Ariwoola is delivering judgment on Ihedioha’s application.

He says there is no constitutional provision empowering the apex court to sit on appeal over its own judgment, so the court does not have the competence to review its own judgment.

Justice Ariwoola states that the finality of the Supreme Court is entrenched in the constitution so the inherent powers of the court does not allow it to review or set aside its own judgment.

“The justices of the court are fallible but the judgment of the court is infallible to ask us to review the judgment will bring the court to disrepute.

The Supreme Court has dismissed Ihedioha’s application for review.

Six out of the seven judges upheld the earlier judgement, but a dissenting judgment by Justice Chima Nweze who believes the judgment ought to be reviewed.

He says the court has the power to overrule itself if such a judgment is not seen to have met the justice of the case.

He adds that Uzodinma misled the court in arriving at the judgment and that there is no evidence that he satisfied the required spread to have been declared the winner of the election.

Justice Nweze says this judgment will continue to haunt the nation’s electoral jurisprudence.

He set aside the judgment of January 14 and ordered Uzodinma to return the certificate of return issued to him as he affirms the election of Mr Ihedioha as the duly elected Governor of Imo state.