Law News
Lawyers flay Aliyu for handing over to Speaker

Some lawyers in the country have described the action of Governor Babangida Aliyu of Niger State asking the Speaker of the state House of Assembly to act on his behalf, instead of his deputy, as illegal and unconstitutional.

Human rights lawyer, Mr. Femi Falana (SAN), said Aliyu was by his action treating the government of the state as his party’s affair.

The governor belongs to the Peoples Democratic Party while his deputy, Mr. Ahmed Ibeto, recently defected to the All Progressives Congress from the PDP.

Falana said, “The deputy governor is still the deputy governor. This is not a party affair. It’s not PDP affair.

“We are not talking about the chairmanship of the PDP. Under the constitution, whenever the governor is not around it is the deputy governor that takes over. It is a governmental affair which has to be run according to the Constitution.

“He (the governor) has to operate under the constitution of Nigeria and not the constitution of the PDP.”

Another Lagos-based lawyer, Mr. Festus Keyamo, said the governor had flouted the provisions of the Constitution and had reduced a constitutional issue to a mere political affair.

“The action of the governor is illegal and unconstitutional. He is politicising a very serious constitutional issue,” he said.

Also, activist and lawyer, Mr. Jiti Ogunye, urged the people of Niger State and Nigerians at large to condemn “what the governor has done and tell him that what he has done is not permissible under our Constitution.”

He said the governor had violated constitutional provisions and “treating the office of the governor as his personal office.”

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