Edo Assembly orders chief judge to set up probe panel against Shaibu

THE Edo State House of Assembly has ordered the state Chief Judge, Daniel Okungbowa, to set up a seven-man probe panel to investigate the allegations against the state deputy governor, Philip Shaibu.

 The House reportedly passed the resolution during the plenary on Tuesday, March 19.

The Assembly is accusing the deputy governor of infraction, including exposing public records.

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The probe panel is expected to investigate the accusations and make recommendations.

The Speaker, Blessing Agbebaku, led the brief meeting.

Agbebaku had earlier informed the House that the deputy governor’s seven-day window for responding to the impeachment notice had passed.

Agbebaku stated that although the deputy governor received the impeachment notice on March 6, 2024, the House mandated that he be served by alternative methods because of suspected service evasion.

He claimed that on March 12, 2024, the replaced service was published in The Vanguard Newspaper and The Observer, a state-owned newspaper.

He claimed that the notification expired on March 19.

The majority leader, Charity Aiguobarueghan, led a motion directing the Chief Judge to constitute a seven-member committee to probe the petition against Shaibu.

According to Aiguobarueghan, the motion is in accordance with Section 188, Sub-sections Three and Four of the Nigerian Constitution.

Nineteen of the 24 members voted in favour of the motion.

The ICIR reported that the Edo State House of Assembly on Wednesday, March 6, commenced the move to impeach Shaibu.

He is being accused of perjury and revealing government secrets.

The majority leader (Aiguobarueghian) who issued the impeachment notice during plenary, stated that the petition, dated March 5, was signed by 21 of the 24 members against the Shaibu.

Aiguobarueghian further noted that the number of members who signed the petition was more than the two-thirds requirement stipulated in Section 188 (2a) of the Constitution.

The Speaker, who acknowledged the receipt of the petition, said it was based on two grounds and directed the house Clerk, Yahaya Omogbai, to serve the impeachment notice on the deputy governor. 

Shaibu, a former member of the House of Representatives and the former Majority Leader of the Edo State House of Assembly was given seven days to respond to the allegations.

His impeachment notice might not be unconnected to his face-off with the state Governor, Godwin Obaseki.



    The move came a few days after Shaibu said he had been receiving impeachment threats over his involvement in the governorship primary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

    He had vowed that nothing would deter him from contesting the Edo governorship election, which he described as his constitutional right.

    The ICIR reports that Shaibu was declared a factional governorship primary election winner on February 22.

    However, Asue Ighodalo emerged as the winner of another primary held by the party at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin, where he officially became the flagbearer endorsed by the PDP national leadership and the preferred candidate of the state governor.

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