Friday, June 20, 2014 7:36 pm
Benin – Mr Uyi Igbe, Speaker, Edo State House of Assembly, has decried the attitude of four suspended members for refusing to obey House rules, and court orders served on them.
Igbe made the condemnation when leaders of All Progressives Congress (APC) in the Edo North Senatorial District visited him on Friday in Benin.
He said that the House had powers under its rules to suspend any member who committed an offence.
He described the crisis rocking the House of Assembly as unfortunate and uncalled for, adding that the continued presence of the suspended members at plenary had further fuelled the crisis.
“According to the House rules under which they were suspended, a suspended member or members are expected to stay away from participating in legislative activities until the suspension is lifted.
“We have noticed that despite their suspension and the restraining order, the suspended lawmakers have continued to hold parallel sittings in the chamber and even want to hold joint sitting with other members; this action further aggravated the issues,” he said.
Igbe said the affected lawmakers were suspended for gross misconduct and not for defecting to another party, adding that the suspended Deputy Speaker was still a member of the APC.
The Speaker said that the House would not allow the minority to overrule the majority, adding that the law would take its course for the sake of peace.
Mr Malik Afegbua, leader of the APC group, said they were on a solidarity visit to the Speaker, and to let him know that the entire Edo North senatorial district was solidly behind him.
“It is unfortunate that the suspended members of the House had chosen to take the law into their hands by violating court order.
“We will not fold our hands and watch some group of people destabilise the effort of the state government.
Afegbua also commended the Speaker for his maturity in managing the crisis.
The House of Assembly has been in crisis since June 9, following the suspension of four legislators, including the Deputy Speaker.