The Executive Director of Nigeria Policy Institute, USA known for itâ€™s good governance advocacy, Chief Jimmy Emmanuel Asiegbu has called on the governor of Anambra State, His Excellency, Mr. Peter Obi and his Commissioner, Dubem Obaze to desist from unnecessary and illegal intrusion into the administrative affairs of Anambra State autonomous Communities without being duly invited by the Townâ€™s Constituted Authorities.
This is contained in a Press release signed by the Executive Director, Chief Jimmy Emmanuel Asiegbu, and Board members, Chief Sam Molokwu and Barrister Bob Eze.
The Institute was reacting to the recent complaints and agitations concerning Peter Obiâ€™s administration involving the appointment of a Caretaker Committee for Umuoji Town UnionÂ on June 23, 2009, byÂ Commissioner Dubem Obaze without any consultation or discussions with the townâ€™s constitutional authorities, such as the Igwe and his cabinet or the Town Union executives.Â Similar intrusions have been reported to NPI-USAÂ involvingÂ quite a number of Anambra State Communities and at each instance, it has caused further disunity and distrust within these communities. There have been allegations of monetary corruption against the Commissioner in each instance and intimidation of Community leaders.
The institute said â€˜â€™since the complaint was made to NPI-USA through the Famous Internet forum, â€œAnambraforumâ€, we had expected Governor Obi to address this issue. To our amazement, we found out that the Government has continued to ignore the issue thereby necessitating NPI-USA to bring this issue to the public.â€™â€˜
The US based institute further asked why the Commissioner has decided to take his action which is inimical to peace in Umuoji; why he has decided to ignore the work of the G-20 Panel set up by the people themselves; why Governor Peter Obiâ€™s administration, which is a child of the law, has decided to ignore the Court injunction which will be heard July 27, 2009.
It is better late than never and the Commissioner and the Governor will be well advised to rescind this action before it is too late.â€
NPI_USA feels that Community problems have existed for years and had always been resolved by the Communities through the Constituted Town Union Authorities which are the Igwes, Igwes in Council and the Town Union Executives. Communities must be given opportunity to explore their traditional ways of solving their problems beforeÂ Governmentâ€™s intervention.
Governmentâ€™s intrusion is only necessary when there is uncontrollable violence or loss of lives and properties. Government assistance is equally necessary when the Town leadership and the Igwe agree to take the matter to the state governments if theÂ Local Government Administrator is unable to resolve the conflict.
That is the way it is supposed to work. The Executive Director condemns a situation where individuals in their communities take it upon themselves to boycott this process and use their friendship or connections with the State government to unduly invite Governments to intervene in their Communityâ€™s problems. Chief Asiegbu says this is nothing but an abuse of power and disrespect for the Towns leadership and the Local Government Administration.Â No government should be used for such egoistic and power_displayÂ purposes, and we pray that His Excellency, Gov. Peter Obi does not continue to sanction such abuse of powers and due process by his administration.
The Executive Director has therefore call on Governor Peter Obi, to ensure that Umuoji Communityâ€™s case receives the highest attention and that this illegal and uninvited Government usurpation of Town Union administrations does not continue.
He urge the governor to conduct local government election to allow Community problems be handled by the appropriate authority which is the Local government Chairman. And also allow the constitutionally established G_20 panel set up by all Umuojians, to complete itâ€™s work in a tranquil atmosphere.