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Exposition of law on Abia governorship controversy

In the absence of an application for stay of execution, there is absolutely nothing in law preventing the issuance of the certificate of return and the swearing-in of Ogah as the governor of Abia State pending the outcome of appeal(s) in the case.

Though Ogah has been declared the duly elected governor of Abia State, Section 185 (1) of the Constitution is explicit that a person duly elected as governor shall not begin to perform the functions of that office until he has declared his assets and has subscribed to the Oath of Office and Oath of Allegiance prescribed in the Seventh Schedule to the Constitution. 

The decisions by the Chief Judge and the President of the Customary Court of Appeal of Abia State to abdicate their responsibilities in this regard amounts to an unconstitutional dereliction of duty in the absence of an application for stay of execution.

Inibehe Effiong is a Legal Practitioner and Convener of the Coalition of Human Rights Defenders (COHRD) and can be reached at: inibehe.effiong@gmail.com



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