UPDATE: Kogi still on auto pilot as Gov Bello attends NEC meeting in Abuja

UPDATE: Kogi still on auto pilot as Gov Bello attends NEC meeting in Abuja
January 28 13:21 2016

Kogi state governor, Yahaya Bello has continued his absence from Lugard House, Lokoja which started a few hours after he took oath of office on Wednesday.

The state has therefore been without a known leader for nearly 20 hours.

Bello is among the state governors attending the National Economic Council (NEC) meeting taking place right now at the State House Council Chambers.

The meeting is being chaired by the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, who is the chairman of the Council.

The confluence state has been bereft of leadership since the evening of Wednesday when the newly sworn-in governor left the state capital, Lokoja to attend the meeting of Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) in the State House Conference Centre, Abuja.

The monthly NGF meeting precedes the National Economic Council (NEC) meeting involving all 36 state governors and the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Thinkers Newspaper had predicted that since Bello attended NGF meeting on Wednesday, he would pass the night in Abuja to attend NEC meeting.

The governors often meet 24 hours before the date of NEC meeting to deliberate and decide on a common position which they will present to the Council.

Bello was sworn-in earlier on Wednesday without a deputy since Hon James Abiodun Faleke who the leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) chose as as his running mate did not make himself available to take oath of office.

Faleke has instead gone to court to enforce his argument that he was the duly elected governor of the state since he and Late Prince Abubakar Audu were already coasting home to victory in the November 21, 2015 gubernatorial poll before his sudden death.

The governor, being the Chief Security Officer of the state is according to the order of hierarchy supposed to hand over power to his deputy when he is leaving the state but Bello may have left the state on auto pilot since he has no deputy.

In the order of hierarchy, the Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Momoh Jimoh Lawal is the next in line but given the fact that he is a member of the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP), it is unclear if Governor Bello handed over to him before leaving the state.

Jimoh was not acknowledged at the governor’s swearing-in earlier in the day, it is therefore unclear if he was present.

He represents Ogori/Magongo constituency in House and leads a legislature that is dominated by the PDP.