The Senator representing Imo West Senatorial District, Rochas Okorocha, on Thursday, congratulated Senator Ifeanyi Araraume on his victory at the Federal High Court Abuja.
Ararume was declared the authentic candidate of the All Progressives Congress in the Imo North Senatorial bye-election held on December 5, 2020.
Okorocha’s congratulatory message was contained in a statement signed on his behalf by his Media Adviser, Sam Onwuemeodo, which was made available to newsmen in Owerri.
In his message, Okorocha said, “Senator Ararume, having served in the Senate for two terms before now, will be expected to bring his wealth of experience to bear for the good of the people of Imo North, Imo and Nigeria in general.”
Reacting to the judgment, Ararume in a telephone interview with one of our correspondents simply said, “I am grateful to God. I thank God for His mercies.”
However, in his reaction, Ibezim dismissed the judgment as a miscarriage of justice, while accusing the judge who presided over the case as engaging in “Judicial rascality.”
He told one of our correspondents, “Today’s judgment is a sad commentary on our judicial process and democracy. Why Justice Taiwo decided to embark on this judicial rascality is still a surprise to me. The question is, on what premise did justice Taiwo deliver this judgment…. If it was a pre-election matter, it was filed out of time. If it is a post-election matter, Justice Taiwo does not have the locus to entertain it. It is the tribunal.
“Justice Taiwo is supposed to be reported to the National Judicial Council for judicial recklessness. The issue of who is the authentic candidate of APC for the Imo North bye-election was decided by the Supreme Court in its judgment on February 5, which went in my favor. Araraume was not a party to the bye-election.”
Earlier, Justice Taiwo Taiwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja, declared Senator Ifeanyi Ararume as winner of the bye-election on the grounds that Ararume was the duly nominated candidate of the APC for the election.
The judge also ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to issue Ararume a Certificate of Return within 72 hours from the date of the delivery of the judgment to facilitate his inauguration as Senator by the President of the Senate.
South-East govs joking with regional security, says ex-Imo senator
A former member of the National Assembly, Athan Achonu, has accused South-East governors of trivialising the region’s security.
Achonu, who represented Imo North at the 8th Senate before he was sacked by a Court of Appeal judgment in Owerri, urged Igbo governors to take over Eastern Security Network from the Indigenous People of Biafra and reform it.
The ex- senator was reacting to the jailbreak in Owerri, as well as the attack on the Imo State Police Command headquarters and the killings in Enugu and Ebonyi States.
He said that the youths were angry with the governments because of lack of employment and business opportunities.
Achonu, who said that he was championing a movement for Igbo billionaires to bring their investments home, said that without security and infrastructure, manufacturing businesses would not thrive in the South-East.
He said, “There is problem in Nigeria. The situation is terrible. Our economy is losing control. Unemployment rate is unbelievable. The worst hit are South-East and South-South. The youths have now been turned into Yahoo boys and drug addicts.”
“Our group will make a presentation to all the South-East governor this April on the need for Igbo billionaires to invest at home. Without local government autonomy, no true democracy will happen in Nigeria.
“South-East governors are joking with Igbo security. They are making the biggest mistake of their lives. They can take ESN and legalise it. There is no security in Nigeria. Kidnapping takes place even in Buhari’s village. Nowhere is safe in Nigeria again.”
Imo jailbreak: FG to pardon escaped inmates who return voluntarily -Aregbesola
Fugitives who escaped from the custodial centre in Owerri, the Imo capital, will be granted amnesty if they return voluntarily, the Minister of Interior, Mr Rauf Aregbesola, has said.
He said this during the inspection of the centre on Tuesday after it was attacked by unknown gunmen.
During the attack, over 1,880 inmates were said to have escaped while 36 stayed back.
According to the minister, escape from custody is unlawful, and a crime.
He explained that if those who escaped return willingly, they will be pardoned from a trial for unlawful escape.
However, they will still be made to face a trial for their actual offence and serve their jail term, if convicted.
He said, “Unlawful escape from custody is a crime but the government in its magnanimity will grant amnesty to prisoners who willfully return.
“They will no longer be charged with an unlawful escape but only for the initial crimes that took them to prison. So we urge all escapees to return before they are caught on the run.”
The minister also described the Monday jailbreak at Owerri Correctional Center and the razing of the Imo State Police Command headquarters as the worst in the recent history of the country.
The ex-governor of Osun State who said that the attackers operated as terrorists, ordered the relocation of Owerri Recreational Club and other structures which he said were posing as a security threat to the premises of the Owerri Custodial Centre.
He said that during the EndSARS protest, custodial centres in Ondo and Osun states were attacked, while an attempt to attack that of Lagos was repelled.
He regretted the targeting of custodial centres in recent times, saying that the federal government would soon roll out adequate measures to protect them.
Aregbesola vowed that those who perpetrated the attack would be apprehended and prosecuted.
BREAKING: Gunmen raze another Imo police station
Gunmen on Tuesday razed the Ehime Mbano Local Government Area Divisional Police Headquarters in Imo State.
This development came just a day after unknown gunmen attacked Owerri Correctional Centre and the Imo State Police Command headquarters, freeing 1,884 inmates and razing over 50 vehicles.
Tuesday’s attack came few hours after the vice president, Yemi Osinbajo, the just sacked Inspector-General of Police, Muhammed Adamu, and other Government functionaries visited the state to inspect the level of damage on the attacked security facilities.
On arrival, the gunmen freed all the suspects in detention before setting the Police Divisional headquarters ablaze.
Our correspondent gathered that the gunmen operated without any resistance from policemen.
A source said, “Gunmen this evening razed Ehime Mbano LGA police divisional headquarters. On arrival, the gunmen freed the suspects before wrecking the havoc.”
A police spokesperson in the state, Orlando Ikeokwu, said that he could not confirm the development when he was contacted by our correspondent on Tuesday evening.
But a senior police officer who does not want his name in print said that the Command’s hierarchy was saddened by the latest development.
The PUNCH reports that gunmen had between February and March razed Obowo, Abo Mbaise, Ihitte/ Uboma and Isiala Mbano Divisional Police Headquarters, killings three cops and injuring others.
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