PMNEWS roprt that Nigeria high Court in Port Harcourt, Rivers state has reinstated the sacked chairman of Obio-Akpor local government, Timothy Nsirim and 17 Councillors.The court declared the sacking of the council boss as unconstitutional and the appointment of the caretaker committee as null and void. Justice Lamikanra directed the state Government not to interfere in the operations of the Council.
In a swift reaction, the Rivers State government in a statement signed by the Mrs Ibim Semenitari, Commissioner for Information and Communications said the trial judge erred in law by acting in total disregard of a subsisting case in the Court of Appeal filed by the State government for a stay of proceeding, but went ahead with the judgment.
The Appeal Court has fixed ruling on 28 November.
However, Mrs Semenitari said the state Government
will abide by the Court judgment and appealed to the people of Obio-Akpor to remain calm.
Meanwhile, the Rivers State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, said it was impressed by the ruling.
The party through a statement signed by the Special Adviser on Media to the State Chairman, Jerry Needam described the nullification of the Caretaker Committee and the reinstatement of the Timothy Nsirim led executive as a victory “over intimidation and dictatorship”.
Needam said the PDP appreciated the rare courage of “Hon Justice Lamikanra for shunning all acts of intimidation, blackmail and attempts to cow her to hands off the case, stressing that if all judicial officers will exhibit such steadfastness, our society will be better for all.”
|Hon. Timothy Nsirim|
The Obio-Akpor council chiefs sacked by House of Assembly were said to be loyalists of Nyesom Wike, the Nigerian Minister of state for Education, that has been engaged in a political cross-fire with Governor Rotimi Amaechi.
Wike is said to be fighting a proxy war on behalf of his principal in Aso Rock, President Goodluck Jonathan and his wife, Patience for the political soul of the state.
The council chiefs were thrown out of office by the State House of Assembly over allegations of breach of security and reckless spending of public funds.
The accounts of the council were subsequently frozen to pave way for the investigation into the allegations made against the councillors as contained in a petition by some stakeholders of the council area.