Posted by News Express | 15 January 2013 | 4,234 times
The Save Enugu Group has primed its arsenal for the second phase of its campaign for Governor Sullivan Chime’s return to his duty post or transfer of power to his deputy as stipulated in the country’s constitution.
The first phase of the group’s campaign which started six days ago involved the writing of a letter to the Enugu State Government to demand information on Chime’s whereabouts and the sending of a high-powered delegation of prominent Enugu citizens to wherever he is to ascertain his condition.
SEG chieftain Maxi Okwu had told News Express yesterday that with the end of phase one of their struggle today, “We enter phase II which is essentially to engage other institutions of Enugu State on this conspiracy by the cabal in Lion Building (G-5). State Traditional Rulers, Labour, Student Unions, Council of Town Union leaders, Faith-based Organisations, etc.”
News Express learnt that SEG’s letters to targeted stakeholders are ready and awaiting distribution. We are in possession of a copy of the letter for traditional rulers. Titled “RE: PROLONGED AND UNEXPLAINED ABSENCE OF HIS EXCELLENCY SULLIVAN IHEANACHO CHIME GOVERNOR ENUGU STATE,” the letter is addressed signed by Maxi Okwu, Ikenecheoha II, Chief Willy Ezeugwu, Ochiagha Nsukka, and Ozo Igbonekwu Ogazimora.
The SEG passionately appealed for the royal fathers’ intervention, reminding them that “okenye anara ano na uno ewu amuo na ogboli” – meaning that an elder does not stay in the house and watch the goat deliver while tethered.
The letter reads as follows:
“May we formally introduce to you the above named pro-democracy association. The association members are Nigerian citizens of Enugu State extraction, driven by the highest patriotic ideals which are of particular concern to our dear state.
“Please find enclosed a letter dated 8th January 2013, on the above subject which we addressed to the Acting Governor of Enugu state. The said letter speaks for itself. The response from the government has been to dismiss us with utter contempt, while the State chapter of the PDP has repeated the same big lie that the Governor is on vacation and would SOON be back.
“We have it on good authority that in the letter H.E. Governor Chime transmitted to the speaker as required by section 190 of the Constitution, he stated he was going on a six week leave. We have it further on good authority that the troika of the Governors younger brother, The Chief of Staff to the Governor and the Accountant General of the State have essentially made the Acting Governor acting ceremonially.
“We would like our royal fathers to dispassionately consider the real issue here. The issue is not that H.E. Sullivan Chime is a performing Governor. It is not that governance is going on smoothly. It is equally not that the state is stable and peaceful. The OFFICIAL excuse by Enugu State Government for the Governors’ inordinately long absence is that he is enjoying his accumulated leave. Any other reason by any other person is MERE SPECULATION. If that is the case, we make bold to state that it is irresponsible for any public official not to talk of a State governor to spend FOUR MONTHS idling in the sun. We would be slow to conclude that H.E. Chime is that irresponsible.
“It would equally be a great disservice to the growth of our democracy to label citizens who democratically engage their government on full disclosure, transparency and accountability. SEG eschews violence and formally declares itself a non-violent association. In our agitation and advocacy campaign we are entitled and would extract the benefits of our fundamental rights and freedoms enshrined in the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended). We refer particularly to sections 39 and 40.
“It is therefore our prayer that as royal fathers and custodians of the customary norms and values of our people, you would partner with us to get to the truth of this matter and restore responsiveness to our governance.
“OKENYE ANARA ANO NA UNO EWU AMUO NA OGBOLI.
“Finally please accept assurances of our highest consideration.”
•Photo: SEG chieftain Maxi Okwu.
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