Members of the Imo State House of Assembly have impeached their speaker, Paul Emeziem, over allegations of gross misconduct and abuse of office and named Kennedy Ibeh as his successor.
The lawmakers also recalled the impeached deputy speaker, Amara Iwuanyanwu.
Emeziem (Onuimo state constituency) was impeached following the decision of 19 of the 27 lawmakers in a signed letter read on the floor of the House where they accused him of gross misconduct and abuse of office.
The motion for his removal was moved by the member representing Oru East state constituency, Chigozie Nwaneri.
The exercise was carried out under tight security during which 19 of the 27 lawmakers allegedly signed the impeachment papers.
LEADERSHIP learnt that the impeached deputy speaker, Iwuanyanwu, besieged the chambers with his supporters and took charge of the Assembly complex and proceeded to announce the impeachment of Emeziem
Sources said it was only eight lawmakers that gained access into the speaker’s quarters where they met and announced Ibeh while Emeziem was denied access into the complex.
Ibeh who represents Obowo State constituency is a ranking member and had always been in the race for the speaker and twice he lost.
However, four of the recalled lawmakers denied being among the signatories to the impeachment of the deputy speaker (Iwuanyanwu), who is now the speaker.
One of the sources who pleaded anonymity said there had been love lost between Emeziem and Iwuanyanwu over the latter’s supposed closeness to Governor Hope Uzodimma which gave him undue advantage.