Declaring our seats vacant could backfire , say Rep defectors

By IAfrica
In Nigeria
Apr 19th, 2014
0 Comments
175 Views

Published on April 19, 2014 by   ·   2 Comments


Ayorinde Oluokun/Abuja

The 37 members of Nigeria’s House of Representatives who defected from Peoples Democratic Party ,PDP to the All Progressives Congress, APC have warned that the insistence by some groups and personalities that their seats should be declared vacant could backfire. The 37 lawmakers said in a statement on Saturday that this is because when the chips are down even those who defected to PDP from other parties could be affected.

“If the Speaker were to declare seats vacant, these PDP apologists should note that it will cut across all parties whose members have so far cross parted one way or the other. Thus declaring seat vacant, after due process has been followed, would not only affect APC as a party” the lawmakers said in a statement signed by Hon. Andrew Uchendu.

The lawmakers said they issued the statements in reaction to calls by some individuals and groups in the media that the Speaker, Aminu Tambuwal should declare their seats vacant despite the fact that there is a suit on the issue going on at a court in Abuja.

Such calls, they argued is therefore contemptuous of the court proceeding.

He said “Our argument before the court is that only Mr. Speaker is constitutionally empowered to declare seats vacant after satisfying himself of some facts. And if the Speaker were to declare seats vacant, these PDP apologists should note that it will cut across all parties whose members have so far cross parted one way or the other.

Nigeria's National Assembly:

Nigeria’s National Assembly:

“Thus declaring seat vacant, after due process has been followed, would not only affect APC as a party.

The lawmakers said in the statement “We have noticed that it has become commonplace every now and then to read in the media comments and calls on the Rt. Hon. Speaker, Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, to declare vacant the seats of the 37 lawmakers who defected from PDP to APC.

One cannot but be amused at such calls due to its inexplicable display of ignorance of our system. And when such calls emanate from people who should otherwise know better, the intention to mislead the public immediately becomes apparent.

Tambuwal: under pressure

Tambuwal: under pressure

“At the risk of being cited for contempt, it needs to be reiterated that the issue of whether a seat is or is not vacant is a live matter before a competent court in Abuja and we all know that once a matter is before the court, it behoves on civilised and law-abiding citizens to stay from drawing conclusions or deciding the matter before the court does so.

“Such calls at this period amount to contempt of the judicial process.

“Those who are so concerned and eager to see the defectors out have option to approach the Federal High Court through a motion of joinder, and join PDP as plaintiffs in the ongoing matter.

“ Our argument before the court is that only Mr. Speaker is constitutionally empowered to declare seats vacant after satisfying himself of some facts.

“And if the Speaker were to declare seats vacant, these PDP apologists should note that it will cut across all parties whose members have so far cross parted one way or the other.

“Thus declaring seat vacant, after due process has been followed, would not only affect APC as a party.

“Let us appeal to all to stay all speculative comments and refrain from heating the polity until the judicial process comes to some determination.

“This arrant display of ignorance and brigandage is enough and our members will not hesitate to approach the court to file contempt charges against people who seek to be more politically concerned than the PDP itself,” the 37 lawmakers concluded.

print

Posted by on April 19, 2014, 9:15 pm. Filed under National, News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.


Share and Enjoy

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Delicious
  • LinkedIn
  • StumbleUpon
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • RSS

Comments are closed.