Gov. Sullivan Chime
As the controversy on the absence of Governor Sullivan Chime from Enugu State for over three months rages, the Speaker of the State Assembly, Hon. Eugene Odo, has described the action of members of the opposition as uncalled for and clearly mischievous.
Odo who spoke to THISDAY on phone maintained that as far as he was concerned, members of the opposition, who have been calling on the National Assembly to take-over the State Assembly on the allegations that the legislators failed to act on the absence of the governor, were simply entertaining themselves.
“As far as I am concerned, the opposition is entertaining themselves on the issue,” he said, explaining that the governor observed constitutional provisions before he travelled out of the country.
He said that the governor had in a letter transmitted to the State Assembly empowered his deputy, Mr Sunday Onyebuchi, to act as governor for the period that he will be away.
Odo added that the governor will equally, on coming back , transmit another letter to the State Assembly taking over his office formally from the acting governor without which he will be an ordinary citizen.
He said that what the governor did was what the Constitution requires, adding that members of the opposition who have been lamenting over his absence failed to understand this.
Odo also said that, so far, there is nothing to show that the acting governor, Onyebuchi, has not performed the role bestowed on him.
Members of the opposition have been worried in recent time over the absence of the governor, demanding that the state government should give information about his continued absence and his health condition. In a letter jointly signed by Chief Maxi Okwu, Igbonekwu Ogazimora, Chief Willy Ezugwu, Mr. Ibuchukwu Ezike, Mr. Victor Eneh and Mr. Ray Nnaji, the opposition last week was reported to have given the acting governor up till a fortnight to yield to their demands, saying his absence has led to rumour mongering and gossiping.
The group had urged the acting governor to constitute a delegation of prominent leaders of Enugu to visit Chime outside the country.
Some members of the opposition had also called on the National Assembly to intervene and take over the State Assembly on the allegation that the legislators have failed to take action on the prolonged absence of Governor Chime.
However, the Chairman of People’s Democratic Party ( PDP) in Enugu, Chief Vita Abba, had apparently in reaction to the opposition appealed to the people of the state to” exercise patience and not allow themselves to be drawn into the controversy”.
Abba assured that very soon the Governor will be back to the state, adding that the state Acting Governor has been doing his best to give the people of the state the much expected dividends of democracy.