Declaration of lawmakers seat vacant is illegal, unconstitutional – EBHA Member Berates Nwifuru, others
By Chinwe Imo-Eze Onwosi
The member of Ebonyi state House of Assembly, EBHA, representing Ishielu North Constituency, Hon. Ali Okechukwu Kizito on Thursday said the speaker Francis Nwifuru and 15 others have been sacked by the federal High court sitting in Abuja, and has no right to invade the assembly complex to illegally and unconstitutional declare the seats of three 3 PDP lawmakers vacant.
Ali said that Nwifuru and other 15 former lawmakers, effectively resigned their positions and blamed the ex-lawmakers for attempting to get conflicting order at High court 3 Abakaliki which was refused by the judge, went ahead and convoked an alleged a kangaroo sitting wherein they unconstitutional declared the seats of 3 members of PDP vacant.
The lawmaker made this known in a statement signed and made available to journalists in Abakaliki capital of Ebonyi state on Thursday.
The statement reads in parts: “On March 8, 2022 the whole of Ebonyi State erupted in spontaneous jubilation as the news of the removal from office of The former speaker Ebonyi State House of Assembly Rt. Hon. Francis Ogbonna Nwifuru and other 15 former members should vacate their office for illegally occupying their office after their defection to All progressive congress APC spread across the country.
“A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja had, in a suit filed to challenge the continued stay in office of these Former Honorable Members after their defection to the APC, in suit No. FHC/CS/1041/2021 between Peoples Democratic Party vs Independent National Electoral Commission & 20 Ors that they had illegally occupied the offices after their defection.
“In other words, and by the operation of the law, The former Speaker Francis Ogbonna Nwifuru and the 15 former lawmakers, effectively resigned their positions perhaps in pursuit of loftier political objectives but instead of pursuing what is after them, they went on in attempt to get conflicting order at High court 3 Abakaliki which was refused by the judge went on a kangaroo and unconstitutional arrangement born out of illegality and sat with his co former Honorable member declaring my seat and 2 other members of the State house of Assembly vacant on the ground that we resigned our position which is not true and has no backing of the law as such arrangement is illegal, criminally minded and misleading the public.
“I wish to reassure my constituents of my unflinching commitment to same and further promise to do all that is legally possible to ensure that every resident of my constituency is not only free, but enjoys a conducive environment for business and pleasure. The battle to rescue the Ebonyi State House Of Assembly from tyranny and oppression has only just begun and i must brace up to confront the evil and narcissistic elements in the land headlong. With God on my side and your unflinching support, victory is already in sight.
“It is of utmost important to note that we are 8 members of Ebonyi State House of Assembly today going by the court verdicts as the other 15 former members including the former speaker had resigned their position and that made their seats vacant for defecting from PDP to APC and these members of the House of Assembly and members of PDP are on a serious mission to reposition the house of Assembly and our God given State salt of the Nation.
“I remains the Honorable Member Representing the good people of Ishielu North Constituency and did not nor will ever resign my position which is the confidence bestowed on me by the good people of Ishielu North constituency which cannot be taking for granted and my seat thereto is intact as I vouch to ensure an adequate representation.
“I note with utter dismay the unruly and irresponsible manner the erstwhile Speaker and his other 15 former House members parades themselves even when it is not within the purview of the Law as same action and in action of the said former speaker is born out of illegality.
“I urge my Constituents to remain calm even in the face of continued brazen provocation and continue to discountenance the chicanery of these lawless crew. They will soon be history. My Constituents and indeed Ebonyians should note that Ex-Speaker and other 15 former members have neither been granted any stay of execution of the declaratory orders of the court nor have they been successfully appealed the judgement.
“All they have done is to apply for stay of execution and file a notice of appeal; neither of which can act as a stay of execution. Similarly, the different court papers emanating from some state high courts cannot and do not confer any imprimatur of a stay of execution as I and my dear colleagues remain the only recognized and Lawful Present Honorable Members of Ebonyi State House of Assembly.
The Lawmaker said that “Ogbonna Francis Nwifuru, Victor Ozioma Chukwu, Kingsley Ikoro, Benjamin Ezeoma, Joseph Ununu, Nkemka Okoro Onuma, Anthony Nwegede, Chinwe Nwachukwu, Onu Nwonye, Friday Nwuhuo, Moses Odunwa, Chinedu Awo, Chinedu Onah, Chukwuma Igwe and Chukwu Arinze Lucas are no longer members of Ebonyi State House of Assembly as they had since resigned their position by defecting from PDP to APC” he stated.