By Emeka Mamah
Presidential candidate of the Republican Party of Nigeria (RPN) in the 2007 general election, Chief Sunny Okogwu has criticized the removal of the National Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Maurice Iwu, saying that Acting President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan did not followed due process in the matter.
Okogwu spoke to newsmen at his Ship House, Kaduna, pointing out that since Iwu was appointed constitutionally, the Presidency should have followed the same constitutional process to ensure transparency in the system.
His words: â€œWell, first of all, Professor Iwu to me is not controversial, he is dynamic.
â€œHe has been appointed constitutionally by Mr. President and the law says it is only Mr. President who can remove him constitutionally again.
â€œAgain, Iwu is a public servant, and, civil service laws state that you will not dismiss, terminate or rubbish any public servant without due process.
â€œIn common man language, we say disciplinary action is taken against a civil servant.
Iwu was not queried, once, â€œhe was not queried, twice and he was not given the final query, or the third time.
â€œAll we hear is that he was removed. This is ridiculous and not a civilized way of rewarding a civil servant; a brilliant civil servant who has served the nation well, and you throw him away, or disgrace him; what did he do?â€
Okogwu explained that as an obedient servant, it was the instruction given to Iwu who was a servant by his master that he would do, adding that Iwu was an obedient servant who obeyed all the instructions given to him by the former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo.
According to him, â€œone can always imagine what goes on between a master and his servant.
â€œGeneral Sani Abacha gave instructions to his former Chief Security Officer (CSO), Major Al-Mustapha and he obeyed, when he was the commanderâ€“inâ€“chief, he obeyed to the last order.â€
He described Iwuâ€™s removal as a tactical administrative and political mistake, pointing out that Jonathan should have got a replacement ready before the removal of Iwu.
â€œNow for you to go and shop for fresh candidates is bad political calculation and it will create problem?
â€œThe names mentioned; you need to know the history of human beings, how to manage them.
â€œIt was sectionalism or personality clashes that almost destroyed our Army.
â€œWe need a substantive chairman for INEC, not acting chairman.
â€œWe have an Acting President, and tomorrow we may have another Acting Chief of Defence Staff, another Acting Inspector General of Police.
â€œ This nation is above actors, we want the principals,â€ he said.