The Imo State Chief Judge, Paschal Nnadi on Tuesday thwarted attempt by Governor Rochas Okorocha to “ilegally” swear in deputy governor-designate Calitus Ekenze by refusing to yield to Okorocha’s pressure to swear in Mr. Ekenze despite a restraining court order.
A state High Court sitting in the state capital had on Tuesday morning following a suit by “impeached” deputy governor Eze Madumere ordered the stopping of the swearing-in ceremony of Ekenze.
But CHECKPOINTCHARLEY gathered that Rochas, known to have little regard for court orders, nevertheless directed that Ekenze’s swearing in should go ahead.
However, Mr. Okorocha was shown the red line he could not cross by Justice Nnadi.
The governor embarassed himself and his guests when after waiting for four hours for the swearing-in of the deputy governor, the CJ said that he could not disobey the order of the court by swearing Ekenze in.
A source, who was present at the Government for the swearing in ceremony said, “While guest, the deputy governor-designate and his family members were waiting for the CJ to commence the administering of the oath of office, the Commissioner for Justice and Attorney General of the state, Militus Nlemadium, broke the news to the audience in the Sam Mbakwe hall that the administering of the oath cannot go ahead.”
The source added that the chief judge told the governor to vacate the court order if he must swear in Ekenze as the new deputy governor.