Anambra Governor, Willie Obiano has described as outrageous, the threat by the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN).
The governor replied the AGF through his Commissioner of Information, Don Adinuba.
Malami had at a press conference at the State House said the Federal Government might declare a State of Emergency in Anambra to ensure that the November 6 governorship election in the state takes place.
According to the commissioner, Anambra has not experienced the level of killings recorded in Kaduna, Borno, Zamfara and the other Northern states where rampaging bandits have murdered hundreds of innocent citizens in the last few months.
Despite the high killings in the North-West and North-East geopolitical zones, Adinuba noted that elections were held in the states, adding that there was nothing in the renewed violence in Anambra in the last few weeks that warrant the declaration of an emergency rule in the South-Eastern state.
Speaking on Channels Television’s ‘Politics Today’ current affairs programme on Wednesday nigh, he lambasted the minister for politicising the situation.
Suspected hoodlums, last week, had killed Dr Chike Akunyili, the widower of the late former Minister of Information and Director-General of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, Prof. Dora Akunyili.
Dr Akunyili was reportedly shot dead on September 28 alongside seven others at Nkpor in the Idemili North Local Government Area of Anambra State.
Meanwhile, some areas of the state including Nnewi have also recorded a pocket of violence as the November 6 governorship poll approaches and as the state governor, Willie Obiano of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) enters his last months in office after eight years.
As a result of the development, Malami, after the Federal Executive Council meeting at the Presidential Villa, Abuja said no possibility is ruled out by government in terms of ensuring the sanctity of our democratic order, in terms of ensuring that our elections in Anambra hold.
“And you cannot rule out the possibility of declaration of state of emergency where it is established, in essence, that there is a failure on the part of the state government to ensure the sanctity of security of lives, properties and democratic order,” he said.
In his reaction, the Anambra Information commissioner said Malami’s statement was politically motivated.
He said there have been a high level of violence in All Progressives Congress states –Imo and Ebonyi – in the zone in the last few months yet emergency rule was not considered by the Federal Government.
“Nigerians are outraged by the threat by the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN.
“Since the renewed violence in Anambra State which we believe is politically motivated, not more than 15 persons have been killed. How many persons have died in Borno, Niger, Kaduna, Yobe, Zamfara, even Imo, which is APC-controlled, (and) Ebonyi, which is APC-controlled?
“Has anybody threatened emergency rule in any of these states?
“For the past seven years, Anambra has remained the safest state, most stable in Nigeria.
“We remain the only state in the whole country that for the past seven years, has not experienced one single bank robbery; what is going on is politically motivated and the declaration by the honourable Attorney-General of the Federation is a confirmation,” Adinuba said.
Also giving a perspective of the law on the matter, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Paul Ananaba, said the insecurity experienced in Anambra has not degenerated into the declaration of an emergency rule.
He noted that the comment made by the minister was conditional, adding that normalcy still remains in Anambra.
“What the State of Emergency does is to put aside the governor, the state assembly and all the institutions. It is an extraordinary measure. Anambra has not reached that point.
“Section 305 has made it clear that at the actual break down of law and order, there is no actual breakdown of law and order in Anambra State – schools are in session, banks are working, markets and all. There is violence but it has not gotten to the declaration of a State of Emergency.”
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