Defection: Ebonyi Assembly declares two PDP lawmakers’ seats vacant

The Ebonyi State House of Assembly, on Friday, declared the seats of two lawmakers, who are members of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the House, Oliver Osi and Mrs. Lilian Ngozi Eziulo vacant.

Osi is representing Ivo Constituency while Mrs. Eziulo is representing Afikpo North East Constituency in the state House of Assembly.

The Assembly took the decision during a plenary that took place at the Legislative Chamber, Nkaliki and presided over by the Deputy Speaker, Hon Kingsley Ogbonaya Ikoro.

The Deputy Speaker, citing section 306 sub section 2 &7 of 1999 Nigerian Constitution as amended, said that the seats of the two lawmakers were declared vacant following an allegation that the House forged their defecation letters from PDP to APC.

Responding, Leader of the House, Victor Uzoma Chukwu, the Deputy leader Chief Onu Nwonye and member representing Onicha West Constituency, Hon Chukwuma Igwe, however, condemned the action of the embattled lawmakers whose seats were declared vacant and vowed that the law must take its cause.

Briefing journalists shortly after the plenary, Ikoro called on the youths of the state to be calm and not to allow themselves to be used to cause violence as the law would be invoked on the factional Deputy Speaker, Obasi Odefa for his actions against the House.

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The 15 lawmakers, however, affirmed their loyalty to the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, led by Governor David Umahi and leadership of Ebonyi State House of Assembly led by Chief Francis Ogbonna Nwifuru.

In a swift reaction, the affected lawmakers, who spoke through Oliva Osi, said it’s only a court with competent jurisdiction that can declare their seats vacant and not members of the house.

He said, “The house can’t declare my seat vacant. We are lawmakers and not breakers. It’s only a court of competent jurisdiction that can declare my seat vacant or my constituents, by way of recall, can do that and not members of the house.

“My lawyers are already putting things together to go to court because that injustice can not stand,” they stated.

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