Tenure Elongation Is Alien To Nigeria Constitution, We Won’t Allow It – Fubara

… election process to commence soon

…orders audit of the LGA administration in past 3 years

Rivers State Governor, Sir Siminalayi Fubara has stated that plot by some outgone Local Government Chairmen to remain in office after the expiration of their tenure is an affront on democracy which will not be permitted, as tenure elongation is completely alien to the Nigerian constitution.

Governor Fubara stated this while swearing-in Chairmen of Caretaker Committees for the 23 Local Government Areas of the State at the Executive Council Chamber, Government House, Port Harcourt on Wednesday.

The governor noted that what he did is in defence of democracy as allowing tenure elongation to succeed in Rivers State will also make it a norm in the entire country.

“Let me also say it, what is happening here is in defence of our democracy. We will not allow a wrong precedent to be created in this country. It is not about Rivers State or me, but if in any way this attempt of tenure elongation succeeds in Rivers State, it will become a norm in Nigeria.”

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“So, we have taken it up on ourselves that not within our own watch will such a thing happen. It is completely alien to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”

He emphasised that it is unthinkable for those whose tenure expired to continue to hold on to office under the guise that election has not been conducted, stressing that over 85% of the States in Nigeria run their local government areas on Caretaker.

“Ours is different, you had your tenure and completed it, it is proper you also leave. Life does not allow for vacuum. People must take over, manage the affairs and elections conducted.”

Governor Fubara stated that the tenure of the caretaker chairmen may not be long as efforts are on to commence the process to conduct elections for the local government administration.

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He charged the caretaker chairmen to avoid confrontation and ensure that they maintain peace and order in their various local government areas, stressing that crisis is not his style

“So, let us not give them the opportunity to continue to make our state look bad. When you go back to your LGAs, if there is any situation, I want you to be law abiding, no confrontation. You can operate from anywhere, the most important thing is that you have the control of the LGAs today.”

Sir Fubara further appealed to the Chairmen to ensure they paid the salaries and entitlements of the outgone chairmen, vice-chairmen and councillors in their various LGAs not minding what happened

The governor also directed the Auditor-General for Local Government as a matter of responsibility to urgently commence the audit of activities of the 23 Local Government Areas in the past three years and make the reports available in the next one month.

“It is important so that we know what has happened and how our funds were used in those 23 LGAs. It is also important to serve as a check for those who are coming in.”

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He congratulated the caretaker chairmen for emerging amongst several other citizens to manage the affairs of the LGA in the State and asked them to see it as an opportunity to protect the interest of their people and make the state proud at this critical time.