The seven-man panel of inquiry mandated to look into the N458million bribery allegation against the Deputy Governor of Imo State, Mr. Jude Agbaso, has been inaugurated at last in spite of a court order which had urged the parties to maintain the status quo.
The inauguration ceremony was performed at the weekend by Justice Goddy Anunihu of the state judiciary on behalf of the Chief Judge of the state, Justice Benjamin Njemanze, who said it was in pursuant to section 188, sub-section 7 (a) of the 1999 Constitution.
Justice Anunihu described the seven-man panel as an embodiment of men of honour and integrity who had done remarkably in their chosen vocations and stressed that the state House of Assembly had drawn up rules of procedure for the conduct of the affairs of the investigative team.
His words, “Our duty as members of the judiciary is to contribute to good governance, orderliness and sanity in the society,” stressing that as a retired High Court judge once seconded to the Republic of Zambia and now working with gentlemen of fine breeding, he had no doubt that the chairman of the panel, Justice Godwin Chukwuemeka Ihekire, and his team would live up to expectation.
Justice Anunihu charged the panel to discharge their duties conscientiously by being fair to all concerned, without malice, and ill-will, so that justice would have been seen to have been done to all men judiciously.
Responding, the chairman of the panel, Justice Ihekire, commended the state government for the honour and trust reposed in them and pledged that they would do their best to live up to expectations required of them.
Other members of the panel are: Egeonu, James Gozie Nze, Chijijoke Mere, Vincent Ifeanyi Onyeka, Humphrey Ajaelu, Oparaku Nwarie and Mrs. Cecilia Oladimeji. – THISDAY