The Imo State House of Assembly has been shut down for the next two weeks following the announcement that a lawmaker has tested positive to the coronavirus disease.
The chairman of the COVID-19 taskforce in the state, Professor Maurice Iwu disclosed this while briefing newsmen in Owerri the state capital on Tuesday.
He said samples of all other lawmakers and their aides have been taken to the laboratory for testing to be able to ascertain the number of people who might have come in contact with the lawmaker who tested positive.
The Imo state police command has arrested 82-year-old Theophilus Okere a retired Director General of Imo State Broadcasting Corporation for allegedly killing his wife Mrs Beatrice Okere in Imerienwe community within the Ngor- Okpala Local Government Area of Imo state.
Confirming the incident, the Imo state police command public relations officer Orlando Ikeokwu disclosed that preliminary investigations revealed that after killing his wife, the 82-year old ran away until he was arrested by the officers of the command after a tip off.
According to reports Mrs Beatrice Okere who was in her seventies was taking to an undisclosed hospital by indigenes of the community after the incident happened but due to loss of so much blood gave up the ghost in the hospital.
However, the Imo state Commissioner of Police Isaac Akinmoyede said investigation is ongoing to ascertain if the man committed the heinous crime and should be charged to Court in due time.
The Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma, has signed an Executive order which significantly reduces the Right of Way (ROW) of telecommunication companies in the State from N4500 to N145 per meter in tandem with Federal Government policy.
According to Governor Uzodinma, the reduction was a manifestation of the government’s determination to spur the telecommunication companies to further invest in broadband infrastructure and trigger ancillary on-line services, especially in the field of education.
He noted in a statement on Wednesday that his government is hopeful that this drastic reduction from N4500 of the broadband ROW to N145 per linear meter of fibre will accelerate the deployment of affordable and reliable modern high-speed connectivity in the State.
The Executive order urged telecommunication companies to note that the State plays host to vibrant and youthful demography located in many tertiary institutions, who form the bulk of the end-users of their products.
The Imo State government has promised to strengthen efforts towards protecting its people from the COVID-19.
Governor, Hope Uzodinma made the commitment while addressing journalists in Owerri on Friday after noting that the state had recorded an additional four cases of the COVID-19.
He expressed his displeasure over the fact that despite the ban on interstate travels and the directives issued on movement to curb the spread of the virus, there was still a lot of non-compliance.
According to the governor, the four cases are all members of the same family who were infected by one of them who recently returned from Lagos.
“There is now need for us to strengthen efforts towards protecting our people at the villages. Despite the announcements and directives to close all borders, it is surprising that somebody came in from Lagos and has infected four members of his family,” he said.
Meanwhile, Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma, has signed into law the bill on Coronavirus Disease and Other Dangerous Infectious Diseases and Related Matters in the state.
He explained that the legislation was important in the state government’s continuous effort to prevent the spread of coronavirus in Imo.
The governor assented to the bill at the Government House in Owerri, the Imo state capital.
He stressed that it has become necessary to give legal backing to all precautionary measures put in place by the government as a result of the threat posed by COVID-19 in Nigeria and other countries.
According to Governor Uzodinma, it is now a criminal offence in Imo if anyone is found violating the directives and orders of the state government on the measures put in place to prevent the spread of the disease.
Such measures include violating the curfew and lockdown, social gathering, social distancing, and approved hygiene practices.
See the case summary of COVID-19 in Nigeria as of April 25 below:
The Federal High Court in Owerri, Imo State has dismissed a suit filed by the former Bayelsa governorship aspirant in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr Timi Alaibe challenging the emergence of the state governor, Duoye Diri as the legitimate winner of the PDP primaries held on September 3, 2019.
Mr Alaibe had dragged Douye Diri and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to court over what he described as a ‘flawed process’ of the PDP primary.
But the court dismissed the suit for lacking in merit, adding that the PDP followed all the constitutional requirements to conduct the primary and subsequent emergence of Diri as the rightful candidate of the party.
The trial judge, Justice Tijani Rigim also ruled that Mr Alaibe shouldn’t have even approached the court in the first instance since PDP had met all the requirements.
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.
A prime suspect linked with the murder of a Reverend father, Cyriacus Onunkwo, in Omuma Oru East Local Government Area of Imo State, has been arrested by the Police.
Reverend Okonkwo, who was kidnapped in September 2017, while planning the burial of his father, was killed by gunmen and his body found a day later at Omuma in Oru East Local Government Area of the state.
The police in a statement on Saturday said the special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) arrested one Charles Nnanna who has been at large over the murder of the Reverend father.
It added that the suspect is the last of the four-man gang who committed the alleged crime.
According to the statement by the command, an investigation revealed that the suspect fled to Indonesia immediately after the crime, and based on credible intelligence, he was arrested during his traditional wedding ceremony a few days ago In Imo state
The command said that Nnanna has confessed to the crime as well as his role in the operation and he will be prosecuted accordingly.
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.
Singer, Charles Oputa, fondly called Charlie Boy, on Wednesday, led a protest against the Supreme Court Judgement on the Imo State Governorship election.
The apex court had in January sacked Emeka Ihedioha of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), replacing him with Hope Uzodinma of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the March 2019 election.
Charlie Boy alongside the protesters under the umbrella of the Imo Concerned Citizens gathered at the Ekwema Square in Owerri, the Imo capital, demanding the reversal of the court’s judgement sacking Emeka Ihedioha as the leader of the South-East State.
According to them, the court must reverse the judgment in Imo State which they described as injustice against the people.
They insisted they would continue the protest until the court reviews the judgement in favour of the PDP.
Operatives of the Department of States Services (DSS), however, prevented a clash between the PDP and APC supporters during the protest.
While reacting to the development, Ihedioha in a tweet on his verified handle, hailed the protesters, calling on them not to relent until justice is served.
Today, concerned citizens of our State took to the streets yet again to carry on with their demand for justice.
I encourage our people to continue to be peaceful and law abiding, as we remain firm in our resolve to strengthen our democracy.