The Edo state chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has kicked against the constitution of a committee by Governor Godwin Obaseki to “reconcile members-elect in the Edo state House of Assembly.”
The party expressed concern that the governor’s move had brought “serious confusion to the polity regarding the legality or otherwise of this committee.”
14 members-elect have continued to stay away from the Assembly over alleged improper inauguration of the House since June 17, 2019.
The speaker, Mr. Frank Okiye, thereafter declared the embattled members-elect seats vacant in December last year.
In a statement issued by the party’s publicity secretary, Mr. Chris Nehikhare, the PDP warned that, “Edo state House of Assembly is not a property of APC, neither are the constituency seats bargaining tools in their political bartering.”
It read in part, “Our party points out that there is nowhere in our laws and lexicon where persons who have not reported for duty, whose seats in the assembly have been declared vacant and the constituencies deemed unrepresented can be referred to as members-elect.
“Those 14 seats belong to PDP candidates who have rightly approached the courts and argued that the refusal/neglect to subscribe to the oath of Membership/Allegiance with respect to the affected constituencies throughout the first session and first quarter of the 7th Assembly of Edo state amounts, to abdication of office.
“We can’t reconcile why the governor thinks a committee can get involved at this time. Frankly, Your Excellency, that ship has sailed.
“Edo PDP, through its lawyer, Barbara Omosun, in suit number: FHC/ABJ//CS/1582/2019, told Justice Ahmed Mohammed that as a registered political party, it was entitled to field candidates in the seats declared vacant by the speakers of Houses of Assembly.”