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Coup against Bauchi State ANPP (6)

By John Moyibi Amoda
AHAMBA advises the ANPP thusly: “They should move first to stop the impeachment process, then ensure that the party regains the mandate because if they allow (Gadi) to be impeached, he may lose the locus to ask that he be sworn in”.

This advice has the force of logic behind it – but not that of the law.  The constitutional process for removing a deputy governor is the same for removing a governor from office.  All that is needed is formal adherence to procedures, not their ethics.  Section 188 does not provide for any third-party intervention to stop its implementation.

“188(1) The Governor or Deputy Governor of a state may be removed from office in accordance with the provisions of this section.

* Whenever a notice of any allegation in writing signed by not less than one-third of the members of the House of Assembly;

(a) is presented to the Speaker of the House of Assembly of the state;
(b) stating that the holder of such office is guilty of gross misconduct in the performance of the functions of his office, detailed particulars of which shall be specified, the Speaker of the House of Assembly shall within seven days of the receipt of the notice, cause or copy of the notice to be served on the holders of the office and on each member of the House of Assembly and shall also cause any statement in reply to the allegation by the holder of the office, be served on each member of the House of Assembly.

* Within 14 days of the presentation of the notice to the Speaker of the House of Assembly (whether or not any statement was made by the holders of the office in reply to the allegation contained in the notice), the House of Assembly shall resolve by motion,, without debate whether or not the allegation shall be investigated,

*A motion of the House of Assembly that the allegation be investigated shall not be declared as having been passed unless it is supported by the votes of not less than two-thirds majority of all the members of the House of Assembly,

* Within seven days of the passing of a motion under the foregoing provisions of this section, the Chief Judge of the State shall at the request of the Speaker of the House of Assembly appoint a Panel of Seven persons who in his opinion are of unquestionable integrity, not being members of any public services, legislative house or political party, to investigate the allegation as provided in this section,

* The holder of an office whose conduct is being investigated under this sections shall have the right to defend himself in person or be represented before the Panel by a legal practitioner of his own choice,
* A Panel appointed under this section shall

(a) have such powers and exercise its functions in accordance with such procedure as may be prescribed by the House of Assembly; and

(b) within three months of its appointment, report its findings to the House of Assembly.
* Where the Panel reports to the House of Assembly that the allegation has not been proved, no further proceedings shall be taken in respect of the matter.

* Where the report of the Panel is that the allegation against the holder of the office has been proved, then within 14 days of the report, the House of Assembly shall consider the report, and if by a resolution of the House of Assembly supported by not less than two-thirds majority of all its members, the report of the Panel is adopted, then the holder of the office shall stand removed from office as from the date of the adoption of the report.

* “No proceedings or determination of the Panel or of the house of Assembly or any matter relating to such proceedings or determination shall be entertained or questioned in any court.

* In this section – “gross misconduct” means a grave violation or breach of the provisions of this Constitution or a misconduct of such nature as amounts in the opinion of the House of Assembly to gross misconduct”.

To impeach or not to impeach is a discretionary matter for one third of the members of the House of Assembly and there is no provision in this 1999 Constitution that can stop the exercise of this discretion.

The Speaker once notified within seven days of the receipt of the notice must cause the notice to be disseminated to the holder of the office and to all members of the House of Assembly.  Within 14 days of the presentation of the notice, the House of Assembly shall resolve by motion without debate whether or not the allegation shall be investigated.

A motion of the House supported by two third or more of all the members of the House is required to have the allegation of gross misconduct investigated.

Within seven days of the passing of the motion, the Chief Judge of the State at the request of the Speaker appoint a panel of seven not being members of any public services, or legislative house of political party, to investigate the allegations as provided in this section.  The Chief Judge shall assemble such a panel.

The panel shall exercise its functions in accordance with such procedure as may be prescribed by the House of Assembly which has decided to impeach the holder of the office.  Within 14 days of the receipt of the report of the Panel that the allegations have been proved, the House of Assembly shall consider the report and if by a resolution of the House supported by not less than two third majority adopt the report, then the holder office shall stand removed from office as from the date of the adoption of the report.


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