A coalition of Civil Society Organisations, CSOs, in Nigeria has called on the acting governor of Taraba state, Alhaji Garba Umar, to revert to his position as the deputy governor, urging him to respect the rule of law in order not to breed crisis in the state.
Addressing a press conference, Secretary-General, Conscience Nigeria, Comrade Opeyemi Duke stressed that Alhaji Garba Umar was supposed to perform his duty in the acting capacity as directed by the House of Assembly in compliance with the constitution.
Duke expressed disappointment that the Deputy Governor had began addressing letters as the governor, as well as forwarding names of commissioner nominees to the state House of Assembly.
“The Deputy Governor wrote a letter dated 30/10/2013 in the letter headed paper of Executive Governor of Taraba state and signed in that capacity as Executive Governor, forwarding names of Commissioner Nominees to the House of Assembly. This show of arrogance further confirmed the creepy move of the Deputy Governor.
“The Deputy Governor, Alhaji Garba Umar is supposed to be performing his duty in acting capacity as directed by the House of Assembly and in compliance with the constitution, and not as elected Governor of the state because this is an injury to the tenet of constitutional democracy,” he said.
“The Deputy Governor is indeed drawing the people of Taraba state close to crises by this disregard for rule of law. It is a shame and utter disregard for the rule of law and judicial system for the Deputy Governor to say that he was not aware of the case or court order concerning the return of Governor Danbaba Suntai,” he added.
Duke had earlier lamented that some members of the state House of Assembly colluded with the Deputy Governor to rob Governor Danbaba Suntai of his mandate.
According to him, the implications of this action pose a threat to Nigeria’s democracy, adding that they are bent on destabilising the state.
Also speaking on the matter, the Executive Director, Child Labour Prevention Foundation, Dr. Felicia Ani, condemned Umar’s move, and therefore called on the deputy to maintain his position and not take advantage of the health condition of Gov. Suntai to rob him of his mandate.