CONFUSION IN BAUCHI: REINSTATED DEP GOV. RISKS ARREST
Impeached Bauchi State Deputy Governor, Mohammed Garba Gadi who was last Friday ordered reinstated by a Bauchi State High Court has said he would resume office today. Gadi was impeached by the State House of Assembly on allegation of gross misconduct.
Speaking with journalists, the reinstated Deputy Governor described the report that the state government had gone to the Court of Appeal in Jos to seek for stay of execution of the court's declaration that the status quo be maintained pending the determination of the appeal filed, as false.
He said: 'They couldn't have appealed because the notice was released to them by 4pm on that Friday and it was not possible for them to have approached any court as the presiding judge was not in Jos on that Friday.
'I will resume office tomorrow (Monday) and anybody who tries to stop me will be charged to court for contempt,' he said. Meanwhile, the state's Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Al-Mustapha Suleiman Hassan had described Gadi's planned resumption as illegal, warning, he will be arrested, if ventures to resume office.
His words: 'He (Gadi) doesn't have power to go there by himself. It is the same authorities that reinstated him that should get Sheriff to take him to office but that cannot be done since there is an appeal in Jos.
'The Commissioner maintained, 'the status quo be maintained.'
When asked on how he will be able to work amicably with Governor Isa Yuguda considering the frosty relationship that has developed between them as a result of his impeachment by the state House of Assembly, Gadi; said 'before the problem started we maintained cordial relationship and by the time the impeachment saga was on, he, Yuguda swore that he did not know anything about it.
'So if I resume tomorrow, I will work amicably with him. I don't have anything against him and I believe he too does not have anything against me.' Daily Sun investigations revealed that all the security men attached to the office of the deputy governor have been restored. When asked to comment on the development, the Special Assistant to Governor Yuguda on media, Sanusi Mohammed said as far as the issue is concerned, government has appealed the judgment in Jos.
His words: 'It has now become a legal issue so I don't want to comment on it.'
The court presided over by Justice Haruna Tsamani had last Friday declared that the removal of the plaintiff from office by the 2nd defendant on the 13th of August 2009 based on the recommendation or report of the 4th defendant when the matter was still pending in court was unconstitutional.
Tsamani stated further that the removal of Gadi based on the recommendation of the defendant when the plaintiff was not given a fair hearing was unconstitutional and therefore null and void. 'It is a shameful thing that the law-making body should breach the law of fair hearing by not giving the deputy governor, Garuba Gadi ample opportunity to defend himself before his removal from office,' he said.
The court then ordered that the incumbent Deputy Governor, Babayo Garba Gamawa vacate his office as deputy governor of the state and Gadi be reinstated. Tsamani therefore declared that all the financial emoluments of Garba Gadi from the date of his removal from office as Deputy Governor till his reinstatement be paid fully.
Reacting to the judgment, counsel to the state government, Ben Obguche said Gadi cannot resume office just like that just because the court ruled saying, they will appeal against it. 'There is no way he can just go to the Hovernment House and say they should reinstate me, the court has to play some roles.' 'Our client has an option to appeal against it. You know the position of the law, the moment that is done they will bring application for the execution of the judgment pending the position of the appeal and that will take quite some time.
'For now, the lower court has done his own, it is now for our client to decide. The moment they decide and instruct us, we'll go ahead for the appeal, you know the judgment is appealable we can go and appeal against it. The Councel to the plaintiff, the former Deputy Governor, Ado Dauda stated if the state government decided to go on appeal, they would also respond, urging the people of the state to abide by the rule of law.