Impeachment Panel ends proceeding as Dep Gov Shaibu refuses to appear



Impeachment Panel ends proceeding as Dep Gov Shaibu refuses to appear


The panel set up by the Chief Judge of Edo State, Justice Daniel Okungbowa, to investigate the allegation of gross misconducts levelled against the deputy governor of the state, Comrade Philip Shaibu, as part of the impeachment processes initiated against him by the Edo State House of Assembly, yesterday ended its sitting without the deputy governor appearing to defend himself.

The seven-man panel headed by Justice Stephen A. Omonua (rtd), had on Thursday ruled that it would adjourn for the last time to Friday to give ample opportunity for the respondent, Shaibu, to defend the allegations levelled against him before the panel after the deputy governor failed to appear that day.

At the inaugural sitting of the panel on Wednesday, Shaibu’s counsel, Prof Oladoyin Awoyale (SAN), had sought leave of the panel to excuse himself and his client from further proceedings of panel after the panel declined his submission that parties in the matter should appear at an Abuja High Court on April 8, 2024 in a case of enforcement of fundamental human rights instituted by Shaibu to show cause why or not the court should grant the reliefs sought.

After Shaibu’s counsel left, the complainant, Edo State House of Assembly, through its counsel, Joe Ohiafi, thereafter opened and closed its case, urging the panel to uphold his submission that the deputy governor violated his oath of office and committed gross misconducts.

Chairman of the panel, Justice Omonua (rtd), then adjourned to Thursday, April 4, 2025 to allow the respondent to come forward to present his defence.

When at the Thursday sitting, where the House of Assembly was represented by N. U. Ibrahim, a Principal Legal Officer with the Assembly and two others, neither Shaibu nor his counsel was present.

The development forced Justice Omonua (rtd) to rule that the panel would adjourn to Friday, April 5, 2024, at 12 noon, for the last time, to allow the deputy governor to appear and defend himself. At yesterday sitting, Shaibu and his counsel were again absent.

Ruling on the development, the Chairman of the panel, Justice Omonua said “the panel adjourned sitting for the last time for today to allow the respondent to defend himself. The panel shall retire to go and write its report as required by the constitution.”

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