Impeachment: Senate urges Plateau House of Assembly to abide by Rule of Law

The Senate has called on the Plateau House of Assembly to be guided by the Rule of Law and the Constitution in all legislative business.

This, the senate said, was to deepen democracy and uphold the independence of the legislature as an arm of government and set aside the impeachment.

The Senate said it was necessary particularly where and when it affects appointment and impeachment of a Presiding officer.

The resolution was sequel to a motion sponsored by Sen. Istifanus Gyang (PDP-Plateau) during Tuesday’s plenary.

The motion is entitled “Disruption of Legislative Business in Plateau State House of Assembly: Need for early intervention by the Senate to avoid deterioration.”

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Speaker of the Assembly, Mr Abok Ayuba, was on Oct. 27, impeached by eight of the 24 members of the legislature.

The Deputy Speaker, Saleh Yipmong, who presided over the unusual sitting elected Yakubu Sanda (APC-Pengana) as the new Speaker.

Moving the motion, Gyang said that the alleged impeachment of the speaker by eight members of the House fell short of the two-third constitutionally required number as provided for in Section 92(c) of the Constitution.

“Majority of the members are opposed to the alleged impeachment and have pledged loyalty and solidarity with the speaker against those loyal to Sanda.

“The Conference of Speakers of the 36 States have denounced the alleged impeachment and withheld recognition for Sanda.”

The lawmaker said that an impasse and stalemate had arisen which if left unattended to, may degenerate.

Contributing, Sen. Gabriel Suswam, said: “behaviour of members has the capacity to negatively affect the perception of the international community as the way we are running our democracy.

“If we do not react swiftly, we will be seen to be abdicating our own responsibility as enshrined in the Constitution as amended 1999.”

In his remarks, the Senate President Ahmad Lawan said, “the governor can receive even if it is one member of the house of assembly who wants to see him as the head of government at that state level.

“So, if eight members or whatever number decide to go and visit him and he receives them, I don’t think the governor has done anything wrong.

“What is wrong after investigation will be whether appropriate steps were taken. If they were not, certainly that is something that the Senate, particularly, and the National Assembly in general, will not tolerate.”



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