A Professor of Law and former commissioner for Information in Imo State Professor Nnamdi Obiaraeri has said that Governor Rochas Okorocha has no choice but to perform his Constitutional responsibility by handing over power to an incoming Governor Emeka Ihedioha on May 29, 2019.
According to him, Nigeria is operating a constitutional democracy which has spelt out issues of devolution of power, hand over, tenure for elected officials of government and duties of all persons including all tiers of government.
“Any serious- minded person be it in politics or in law must hold an opinion that is durable, founded on law due process. We live in a constitutional environment where law and order is spelt out including hand over, tenure of elected officials government and duties of all persons in Nigeria.
“You must agree with me that we cannot have a governor for four years and one minute and nobody can be duly elected for less than four years. Rochas has no power to say he will not hand over on May 29. Even if he did not hand over anything, he leaves government house for an incoming Governor Emeka Ihedioha.
“Nothing said you must be sworn-in at the stadium. The chief Judge of the state or President of Customary Court of Appeal or anybody acting on their behalf is constitutionally duty bound to perform that role of swearing-in which is the real transmission of the instrument of power and it can be done anywhere.
“Therefore this sentiments and unnecessary alarm that Governor Rochas Okorocha is not cooperating with the incoming Governor should not make headlines. It will be too bad for Ihedioha or Okorocha group to make enemies for their principals. You cannot challenge the incumbent governor until you become one and on the basis that he is cooperating with your transition Committee group”.
Professor Obiaraeri stated this in an interview with Akelicious in Owerri while responding to allegations made by Emeka Ihedioha which stated that Governor Rochas Okorocha was determined to frustrate the expected hand over activities lined up ahead of May 29.
“With barely a few days to the commencement of some of the activities presaging the actual swearing-in and handover ceremonies, we regret to say that the body language of the state government no longer imbues confidence that it is genuinely committed to the overall success of that exercise.
“It is increasingly getting clearer that unless we proceed on terms dictated by them, the state government will be reluctant to discharge its constitutional responsibilities regarding the swearing-in and handover ceremonies.
“We find this tardiness although characteristic on their part, very discomforting”, said the Secretary Media and Publicity sub-committee for Ihedioha.