Edo State House of Assembly Directs Investigation into Deputy Governor’s Alleged Misconduct

In a significant development, the Edo State House of Assembly has taken decisive action by passing a resolution on Tuesday, directing the Chief Judge of the State, Justice Daniel Okungbowa, to establish a seven-man committee tasked with investigating allegations of gross misconduct leveled against Deputy Governor Philip Shaibu.

During the plenary session, a resounding majority of 19 out of the 24 members voted in favor of the resolution, signaling a unified stance by the Assembly in pursuing the matter. The House had initiated impeachment proceedings against Shaibu on March 5, citing accusations of perjury and the unauthorized disclosure of government secrets.

Despite concerted efforts to serve the impeachment notice to Shaibu, including physical attempts while he was reportedly out of the state, the House resorted to substituted service by publishing the notice in three national dailies on March 12. This legal maneuver was necessitated by the deputy governor’s alleged evasion of service, ensuring compliance with due process.

The rift between Shaibu and Governor Godwin Obaseki has been an ongoing issue, exacerbated by Shaibu’s declaration of interest in contesting this year’s Edo governorship race. The strained relationship between the deputy governor and his principal has evidently escalated, culminating in the Assembly’s impeachment move.

Speaker Blessing Agbebaku highlighted that the seven-day ultimatum for Shaibu to respond to the impeachment notice had elapsed, emphasizing the House’s adherence to constitutional provisions. Majority Leader Charity Aiguobarueghan, supported by Nicholas Asonsere, moved a motion in accordance with Section 188 Subsections 3 and 4 of the constitution, underscoring the Assembly’s duty to investigate the allegations irrespective of the deputy governor’s response.

With 19 members of the House backing the motion, the Speaker directed the chief judge to expeditiously establish a seven-man committee to probe the allegations against the deputy governor.

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