22 council chairmen threaten to return to office in rivers

There is high level uncertainty in Rivers State with twists and turns that have trailed the election of Local Government Chairmen in the state. 

The 22 Chairmen sacked by a verdict of a Federal High Court last week said they will be resuming in their offices today, Tuesday, after a National Industrial Court on Wednesday ruled that its order barring the state government and other parties from interfering in the tenure of the Chairmen subsists. 

Public Relations Officer of ALGON who is the sacked Chairman of Ahoada West Local Government, Samuel Eyiba said the National Industrial Court simply reinstated them and empowered them to resume in their respective offices.

But the Attorney General and Commission for Justice in Rivers State, Emmanuel Aguma faulted the position of the 22 elected Chairmen. He argued that the Federal High Court judgment was on a matter that pre-dates what he described ‘sham in the name of an election’. The court according to the Attorney General is not in the eye of the law, aware of an election and by extension, meaning that the election did not hold.

A check by HOMELAND NEWS Tuesday morning in Rivers shows that the local government secretariats are being occupied by the transition committees inaugurated by Governor Nyesom Wike on Thursday last week.

Heavy security presence is reported around the capital and other strategic locations. 

Meanwhile, while as the political interests continue to size-up one another, residents of the state are in fear of a violent clash if the 22 contending local government chairmen make do their threat to return to the office they held for about 6 weeks before the Federal High Court judgment last week. Some private businesses particularly in the Capital are running skeletal service emphasising the uncertainty in the air.

Rivers state commissioner of Police, Chris Ezike has restated that the command will not permit any protest or rally connected to the complicated judgments on the Local government chairmanship.

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