Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, and his deputy, Eze Madumere, have again embarked on battle of words over failure of the governor to recognise Madumere as deputy governor of the state.
The drama started at a burial ceremony of the mother of Senator Osita Izunaso, at Ohuba in Oru West Local Government Area of the state during the weekend.
At that event, the governor reportedly refused to recognise Madumere as the deputy governor of the state but rather mentioned Calistus Ekenze, as deputy governor designate.
Peeved by the governor’s action, Madumere described such as “embarrassing display” by the governor and pleaded that Okorocha should be forgiven.
Okorocha however, justified his action by saying that, “there is an existing matter at the appeal court against the high court judgement that quashed the impeachment of Madumere by the State House of Assembly.
Since this outing, Okorocha and his deputy have been at each other’s neck over who is right or wrong.
A statement by Okorocha’s Chief Press Secretary, Sam Onwuemeodo, yesterday said: “As a matter of fact, the failure or inability of the governor to recognise Madumere as the deputy governor of the state at that event was not an oversight.
“That was the proper thing to do because there is an existing appeal at the appeal court against the high court judgement that quashed the impeachment of Madumere by the state House of Assembly.
“So, until the appeal is decided, Madumere remains impeached and recognising him as the deputy governor of the state with the appeal pending would mean jeopardising the appeal.”
Earlier, Madumere’s Chief Press Secretary, Uche Onwuchekwe, said: “The governor’s breach of protocol and utter abuse of rule of law is indecorous and height of pettiness as it was embarrassing that such misdemeanor could play out in such a solemn event as funeral service, in a solemn place of worship with clergy of high echelon as Bishops, eminent jurists, former governors, Senators and civilised personalities all present.
“It will be recalled that on September 25, 2018, a court of competent jurisdiction had nullified a purported Okorocha sponsored impeachment of Prince Eze Madumere as the deputy governor of Imo State and had also directed that all his emoluments and other entitlements, including privileges be restored.
“Till date, Chief Okorocha in his grandstanding has wilfully resolved not to obey the order of the court by blatantly refusing to restore the official privileges of the deputy governor save for access to his office.”