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Nigeria high court rules governor's impeachment unconstitutional

[JURIST] The Nigerian Supreme Court has ruled that an attempt to remove regional governor Rasheed Ladoja from his position was unconstitutional. Ladoja, governor of Nigeria's Oyo state, was impeached [BBC report] in January 2006 after being accused of corruption and abusing his office. He challenged the impeachment in court, and the nation's high court on Thursday upheld a lower court ruling that constitutional procedure was not followed in the attempt to remove Ladoja from office. Further details of the supreme court's decision are expected to be released next year. Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo [official profile; BBC profile] welcomed the ruling [statement] and ordered the country's police to ensure that the court's decision is immediately enforced.

Five Nigerian governors have been impeached during the past year in an attempt to crack down on corruption [BBC report]. As many as two-thirds of the nation's governors are under investigation by Nigeria's Economic and Financial Crimes Commission [official website]. In October, Obasanjo declared a state of emergency [JURIST report] in the state of Ekiti [government website] after Ekiti Governor Ayodele Fayose's impeachment, which Obasanjo called "unconstitutional." AFP has more.

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