OF THREE SUSPENDED LAWMAKERS AND NGOR-OKPALA STATE CONSTITUENCY SEAT DECLARED VACANT : IMO SPEAKER IS NOT A DICTATOR


In A Bid To Instill More Discipline, Legislative Sanity And Responsiveness In Carrying Out Legislative Assignment For Which Lawmakers Of The Imo State House Of Assembly Were Elected, Certain Patriotic Actions Were Taken By The Leadership Of The House, Not Out Of Wickedness And High Handedness As Being Insinuated In So Many Quarters, Including The Social Media, But Out Of Love, Care, Concern, Patriotism And Ready-To-Work Spirit Of Rt Honourable Kennedy Chigozie Ibeh To Reposition The Assembly And Place The State On A Geometric Scale Of Legislative Progress, For The Overall Benefit Of Imo State Government And Ndimo.


At The Plenary Held On 23/12/2021, Two Letters Containing Petitions Were Received From Named Constituents Of Ngor-Okpala State Constituency, Bothering On Serious Complains Of Non-representation, Inability To Access Or Have Audience With Their Elected Representative, Hon Tochi Okereke, Due To Absenteeism From Office, From Plenary, And From The Assembly Complex. The Rt Honourable Speaker, In His Wisdom, Referred The Petition To The Committee On Ethics And Privileges To Look Into.

Nevertheless, The House Has Rules And Regulations Guiding It, And The Issues Of The Member Representing Ngor-Okpala State Constituency Had Severally Come, Not Only In The Current Leadership Of The Assembly, But In Two Immediate Past Leaderships, All Bothering On Habitual Absenteeism, Refusal To Attend Sittings, Refusal To Come To Work, Refusal To Come To His Office And Refusal Attend Plenary And Make Laws, For Which He Was Elected By The Good People Of Ngor-Okpala State Constituency, And Indeed, Refusal To Participate In The Overall Progress Of The State.

This Laiser Faire Attitude And "I Don't Care Posture" Of Hon Tochi Okereke Has Contributed In No Small Measure In Slowing Down The Legislative Responsibility Of The Imo State House Of Assembly To The People Of Ngor-Okpala State Constituency In Particular And Ndimo In General. Conversely, Since No Action Have Been Taken To Put A Stop To This "I Don't Care Attitude", It Started Affecting The Performances Of Other Lawmakers, Who Have Been Distinguished In All Aspects.

Therefore, In A Bid To Put A Stop To This, The Rt Honourable Speaker, Out Of Love, Concern, Care And Ready-To-Work Spirit Decided To Wade In, By Making A Commendable Bold Statement. Consequently, The Clerk Of The State House Of Assembly, Barrister Mrs Chinelo Emeghara, Was Called Upon To Check The Attendance Register Of The Affected Lawmaker, Hon Tochi Okereke, From Date Of Inauguration (June 2019) To Date (December 2021). To The Chagrin Of Everyone In The Hallowed Chamber, The Following Were Discovered Concerning The Absenteeism Profile Of Hon Tochi Okereke, Which Has Adversely Affected The Progress Of The State Assembly, For Which He Was Elected In The First Place.......

A. In 2019, He Attended Sitting For Only 29 Times.

B. In 2020, He Attended Sitting For Only 14 Times.

C. In 2021, He Has Failed To Sit At Plenary Or Even Show Up, And Has Failed To Show Satisfactorily, Reasons For His Absenteeism.

Therefore, In A Bid To Rescue This Lackluster Representation For Ngor-Okpala State Constituency And Absenteeism, The Speaker Of Imo State House Of Assembly, Rt Honourable Kennedy Chidozie Ibeh, Relying On Section 109(2) Of The Constitution Of Nigeria Did The Needful. It Should Be Noted That A Motion To That Effect Came On The Floor Of The House That The Honourable Member Has Continued To Stay Away From The House Sittings And Legislative Activities Since Early 2020, Therefore And Thereby Seriously Contravening Section 109(1) Of The Constitution Of Nigeria. As A Person, Kennedy Ibeh, Feels Bad, But As Speaker, He Feels Pity For The People Of Ngor-Okpala State Constituency For Lack Of Representation For Close To Two Years, Without Any Satisfactory, Cogent And Verifiable Reason. The Rt Honourable Speaker's Hands Were Indeed Tied By Law Of The Land And The Needful Was Done.


On The Three Suspended Lawmakers, Namely,

A. Rt Honourable Arthur Egwim ( Ideato North State Constituency).


B. Rt Honourable Obinna Okwara ( Nkwerre State Constituency).


C. Rt Honourable Ngozi Obiefule ( Isu State Constituency).


It Should Be Recalled That As Soon As His Excellency Governor Hope Uzodinma Presented The Appropriation Bill For 2022 (Otherwise Known As 2022 Budget Proposal) On The Floor Of The House, Some Resolutions Were Considered And Adopted. Unfortunately, The Aformentioned Lawmakers, With Due Respect To Them, Acted Dishonorably By Disregarding Those Resolutions Of The House As Follows...


A. On The 17th Of December 2021, The House By The Verbal Commitment Of Members Who Spoke Glowingly On The Occasion Of Budget Presentation Resolved To EXPEDITIOUSLY TACKLE THE 2022 APPROPRIATION BILL Because Of The Glorious Contents Of The Budget.

B. The House Resolved To Handle The Interface With MDAs In The State With Three Days Which Required ALL MEMBERS Sacrificing All For This Major Constitutional Role.

Unfortunately, The Three Suspended Lawmakers Defied The Resolutions Of The House And Went About Their PERSONAL BUSINESSES To The Suffering And Embarrassment Of Other Lawmakers, Including Mr Speaker, Who Tirelessly Worked Day And Night To Deliver THIS IMO PEOPLE'S ALL IMPORTANT DOCUMENT.


It Is Rather Further Worrisome That One Of The Recalcitrant Suspended Member Is Propagating That He Was Suspended For Attending A Burial In Nkwerre Local Government Area. This Is Blackmail From The Pit Of Hell. After All, The Suspended Lawmakers Were Not The Only Ones That Attended The Said Burial. Some Other Lawmakers Attended, Including One Of The Rt Honourable Speaker's Political Appointee, Citizen Ikenna Samuelson Iwuoha. So The Allegation Of Being Suspended For Attending A Burial Ceremony In Nkwerre Is Completely False.


Mr Speaker Was Seen Leaving Office At About 8:30pm, As A Result Of The Exigencies Of Office And The Demand To Tackle The Budget Issues With Ministries, Departments And Parastatals Within The PROVIDED TIME FRAME Having Promised Imo People Alongside Other Honourable Members To Ensure Expeditious Delivery.


The Present Leadership Of The Imo State House Of Assembly Is Determined To Make Positive Impact On The Lives Of Imo People.



Citizen Ikenna Samuelson Iwuoha Fcai
(Office Of The Rt Honourable Speaker, Imo State House Of Assembly)
23/12/2021

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