Taraba: Lawyer Says Suntai Does Not Look Fit Enough For Office

SuntaiA Legal Practitioner, George Ekeh, believes that the interpretation of ‘permanent incapacitation’ as suggested by the an aide of Taraba State Governor, Danbaba Suntai, to justify his stay in office is not realistic.

Speaking on Channels Television, Ekeh said that permanent incapacitation as described by former Taraba State Commissioner for Information, Emmanuel Bello, cannot be defined.

If we start looking at permanent incapacitation, that section of the constitution can never be invoked. It cannot be because if you start looking at when someone is permanently incapacitated, the person would have been dead.”

Ekeh said that from all indication, Governor Suntai has lost his fitness to cope with the demands of the office of a Governor.

He demanded a contextual interpretation of the constitutional provision on permanent incapacitation as this would be necessary in resolving the matter.

Ekeh also maintained, contrary to Bello’s submission, that the Suntai case is very similar to what was experienced during late President Yar’adua’s illness.

He stated that some level of political morality crept into the unfortunate incident and this is what the Governor’s loyalists are basing their acts on – to keep the Governor in office and help him run the affairs of the state.

He said that the medical panel recently set up by the State Assembly should have been set up long ago as verifying the state of the Governor’s fitness and capacity to run the office would have saved the state all the trouble.

On the need not to portray insensitivity to the leadership capacity of people living with disability through the Suntai matter, Ekeh noted that this should not be offensive as a crippled man with a sound mind can run any office but Governor Suntai, by his observation, has also “lost orientation with regards to time and place – where he was, where he is and where he possibly would be going to.

“On the surface he may look healthy but we are now talking about if he is fit to run and take the demands of that office.”

He maintained that physical and mental fitness make up the capacity of the Governor to remain in office.

Mr Ekeh also said that having waited for about two years for the Governor to recover and he seems not to have achieved the level of fitness expected of a man in the very demanding office of the Governor, the constitution recommends that he should be led out of the office.

Nwagu Calls On Taraba Citizens To Break ‘Lock Jam’

The Convener of the Say No Campaign Nigeria, Eze Nwagu, has called on the people of Taraba state to break the ‘lock jam’ in the state by demanding that the governor make an official appearance.

He said this while responding to statement made by the Taraba state Commissioner for Information, Mr Emmanuel Bello adding that he was wrong to say that “the governor returned,” but rather he should have said that “the governor was brought back”.

He also said his claim that the governor was received by a ‘tumultuous crowd’ is false as no media reported such.

In order to put an end to speculations about his health, the governor should have admitted his frail condition by addressing the people and thereafter ask for more time to fully recover.

“That has not happened,” he said adding that “all this drama is something we have gone through”. He described it as an act of “holding on to legalistic ties as something that we do when it is convenient. Remember in 2010, we played it until we invented doctrine of necessity”.

“This drama is unhelpful not just for the people of Taraba state, those are part of the things that make us the laughing stock in the comity of nations,” Mr Nwagu said.

He advised the governor to continue resting until he is fit to resume duty and let the acting governor continue in his stead.

He said that the health condition of serving government officers should not be “shrouded in opaqueness” and then called on the people “to break the lock-jam in the state”.