By Austin Ogwuda, Asaba
AN Oleh High Court in Delta State has granted an interim injunction restraining seventeen Councillors in Isoko South local government council from impeaching the Chairman of the council, Chief Askia Ogieh
Ogieh, who approached the court through an Ex-parte Motion to preempt them from sacking him was however ordered by the court “to enter into undertaking to pay the sum of N500,000 as damages if court found out in the end that it ought not to have made this order in the first place”.
Seventeen out of twenty councillors in the council had earlier placed the embattled Chairman on three months suspension for allegedly flouting financial regulations and his inability to render accounts of the LGA for over a year contrary to Local Government Laws.
The applicant has prayed the court for “an order of interim injunction restraining the 1st – 17th defendants/respondents (councillors) themselves, privies, or anybody whatsoever acting on their behalf from removing and/or impeaching the claimant/applicant from office as Chairman of Isoko South local government council of Delta State pending the hearing and determination of the Motion on Notice”.
In a related development, the President of the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE), Delta State chapter, Comrade David Ofoeyeno has warned local government councillors to desist from summoning treasurers and any member of staff of the councils in the state at random to come and render account, saying that the councillors lacked the constitutional right to even do so.
Ofoeyeno in a statement in Asaba, said that “there is no provision in the Local Government Law and other relevant extant rules even in the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria where provisions is made for incessant harassment of civil servants”.
The reaction followed the summon s received by some staff of Warri South West councillors to appear before them (councillors) and render account of income and expenditure.