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Anambra Assembly Impeaches Speaker

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The speaker of Anambra State House of Assembly, Hon. Mrs Rita Maduagwu has been impeached.

Her impeachment was carried out yesterday by 22 out of the 30 members of the state assembly who subsequently elected the member representing Aguata 2 state constituency, Hon. Ikem Uzoezie as the new speaker.

But in a swift reaction, Clerk of the Assembly, Chief Pius Udoh, a lawyer, described Maduagwu’s impeachment as illegal, null and void stating that the exercise was carried out in a clear breach of section 92(c) of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria( as amended).

He told newsmen in his office in the state assembly that the sitting of the lawmakers who carried out the impeachment was illegal, and faulted the claim that there were 22 lawmakers that carried out the purported impeachment.

The clerk argued that the deputy speaker, Hon. Hayfords Oseke who presided over the House’s sitting when the impeachment of the speaker was carried out was illegal because the speaker was within the  state assembly premises and there was no prior communication from the speaker to him ( Clerk) stating that she was not going to be available to preside over the sitting.

Stating further that he deliberately refused to swear in the new speaker of the House because he knew that the impeachment was illegal, null and void, the clerk said that he even told the new speaker, Hon. Uzoezie when he was going to occupy the speaker’s seat that his election was not properly done.

“They carried out the impeachment by a voice vote, and, I know that the impeachment of a speaker of a State Assembly is a very serious legislative matter that cannot be carried out through a voice vote. In impeaching a speak, those in support must write their names in a register and sign their signatures for proper recognition. It is because I know that the impeachment was not properly done, this is why I did not swear in anybody as the new speaker “, Mr. Udoh stated further.

Meanwhile, Speaker Maduagwu was impeached following a motion for her impeachment moved by the member representing Aguata 2, Hon. Ikem Uzozie who accused her of financial impropriety, high-handedness and docility. His motion was seconded by the member representing Ekwusigo state constituency, Hon. Onyebuchi Offor.

The deputy speaker of the House of Assembly, Hon. Hayfords Osseke presided over the siting before Hon. Uzozie was elected by the members as the new speaker.

Shortly after the House adjourned to Thursday, November 15, for sitting, the impeached Speaker, Hon. Maduagwu stormed the state Assembly chambers and presided over another plenary which had 10 members of the state assembly and herself, making them a total of 11 legislators in attendance.

Two members of the state assembly, Hons. Obinna  Emenaka, representing Anambra West constituency and his Awka-south 2 counterpart, Dr. Nnamdi Okafor did not attend any of the two separate sittings as they were said to be outside the state.

Though there was no sign of possible fracas between the opposing legislators, security was immediately beefed up in the state assembly by the state police command with the assistant commissioner of Police in Charge of Operations, Mr. J. I. Jega leading the police team.



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