Stanley Uzoaru, Owerri
Tension. Anxiety. Those are the words that will rightly describe the current situation at the Imo State House of Assembly over the impeachment plot by opposition members against the Speaker, Chiji Collins.
According to findings, the plot, which has been put on hold because of the shutdown of the House when some members tested positive for the Coronavirus may be executed when the Assembly resumes sitting.
However, the Speaker when contacted said he is not afraid of the plotters. He maintained that those behind it are minority members who were not happy over the change of government in the State.
He accused the lawmakers of being selfish and not seeing the realities of moving on in the interest of the citizens of the State.
The Speaker however fingered the former governor of the State, Emeka Ihedioha who he said is allegedly using the members from his sister constituency, Anyadike Nwosu from Ezinihitte Mbaise who is also a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)to destabilise the House.
According to the Speaker “Which House of Assembly leadership do they want to impeach, do they know that this House is continuity from Ihedioha to Governor Hope Uzodinma. If he says the leadership has messed up then he is the problem.
“I was speaker under Ihedioha, we did marvelously well and Ihedioha applauded us. We passed so many good motions and laws as one of the best leadership of the House of Assembly in Nigeria. Even Ihedioha confirmed it.
“Is it because Anyadike, is coming in as a minority after his brother Ihedioha was removed by the Supreme Court? We know that some people will be jealous, you don’t know him until you give him a position but I promise you they cannot do anything, they are few minority who do not want to agree that the supreme court has given its verdict and we have only one governor now.”
Meanwhile, Anyadike has absolved Ihedioha from the alleged plot, insisting that he has never spoken or seen the former governor since he left office.
“In law, whoever alleges must prove, he is alleging we are trying to destabilise the House and impeach him, it’s only existing in the mind of the Speaker. Besides, Ihedioha has come and gone , he is in Abuja, not even in Imo State, I hardly communicate with him, the Speaker is only finding it difficult to own up to his own ineptitude that has really kept the House where it is now.
“We have never had technical meeting of the House, so if he thinks we are trying to destabilise the House with the help of Ihedioha, let him explain how, do we have the capacity to mobilise the House, so what we are saying is that what is bad is bad, let the right thing be done, I can’t go for his job, I’m from minority.”
Another lawmaker also mentioned in the impeachment plot, Ngozi Obiefule representing Isu/Njaba State constituency has also denied any contact with Ihedioha or anybody to impeach the Speaker.
According to Obiefule “For the past 14 days, I have been in my house on quarantine and I don’t think anybody will claim that he has seen me in anybody’s house, but if the Speaker thinks that he has done something that warrants his impeachment, he will be impeached and he will be asked to resign.
“He should not be threatening members , last time he said I will be suspended. You cannot subdue or emasculate your members by threat. He might be imposed on us by the Executive but whether he stays or he goes, it is at our own pleasure.
So if he knows he has issues, he should handle them and plead with the members not threatening them, threatening them is unacceptable.
“If the Speaker does something that warrants him to resign, he will be asked to resign. All of us came as representatives of our local governments, none of us came as deputy speaker or speaker. Those are appointments. So if he wants to retain his position, he must make sure he looks out for the interest of the members not for himself.”