George Onyejiuwa, Owerri
A plot to remove the Speaker of Imo State House of Assembly, Mr. Acho Ihim, thickened, yesterday, with security operatives mounting heavy surveillance on the assembly.
The security operatives stationed their vehicles at strategic locations leading to the legislative house.
This was even as the speaker was said to have invited five suspended members of the house for dialogue next week; in a bid to stave off impeachment.
Nineteen members had perfected plot to impeach the speaker, which included five of the suspended members; over how the speaker had allegedly directed the affairs of the assembly.
However, Daily Sun reliably gathered that the sudden invitation of the suspended members by the speaker might not be unconnected with the alleged plot to disgrace him out of office, through impeachment.
The source also disclosed that the lawmakers alleged that they were used and dumped during the last House of Assembly and governorship elections.
They also expressed dismay that most of their allowances have not be paid.
‘’The members of the House are not happy because their allowances and other entitlements have not be paid to them.
“ forget that majority of them had joined Action Alliance (AA) hoping that they would the returned to the house as they were promised by the state governor. But, only six of the current members won re-election back to the house and they are not.
“ If you notice today you discover here are heavy presence of security men in the complex, including others stationed at strategic points. This is because of the rumoured plot my some 14 aggrieved members of the House in alliance with the five suspended members to remove the speaker, and I’m sure that is why he had invited the five suspended members for a dialogue after the motion moved by Chika Madumere to recall them,’’ the source hinted.
The speaker, who presided over the plenary, directed that the suspended members of the house be invited for an interface with members at executive session.
Ihim issued the invitation, yesterday, following a motion for the recall of the suspended members by the representative of Nkwerre state constituency, Chika Madumere, said their possible recall will be discussed.
He said far reaching decisions had been taken concerning the suspended lawmakers and the decisions would be communicated to them.
An Imo High Court, on November 5 last year, quashed the suspension of four of the five suspended members of the State House of Assembly, describing their suspension as unconstitutional.
The court also jointly awarded the applicants, Dr. Uche Oguwuike (Ikeduru APC), Chiji Collins (Isiala Mbano APC), Israel Nnataraonye (Mbaitoli) and Nkenna Nzeruo (Oru East APC) N8 million in damages and N100,000 in legal fees.
The presiding judge, Justice Goddy Anunihu, who presided, in his ruling, also directed the speaker of the House and the Imo House of Assembly, who were the first and second respondents to pay the applicants their salaries, allowances and emoluments for the period they were suspended.
But, the leadership of the House had ignored the judgment.