ObasekiPolitics

They were listening to their godfather – Obaseki rules out return of 14 lawmakers

The Governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki, has insisted he does not have the power to bring back 14 lawmakers in the State House of Assembly, who are yet to be inaugurated.

Obaseki stated this on Monday, while speaking to reporters when he paid a visit to the National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Abuja.

He claimed that the 14 lawmakers were “listening to their godfather” and “refused to be inaugurated”.

The Governor said, “They were listening to their godfather who kept hoping and promising that he would unconstitutionally get the state House of Assembly to reissue a proclamation even after the court had settled the matter.

“For more than 180 days they did not come. They refused to represent the people. Those seats became vacant; that’s what the constitution says.

“They went to court after those were declared vacant by the Speaker. There is nothing I can do to that at this time.

“I wish it did not happen but people were playing God and promising what is not constitutionally possible.”

The crisis in the Edo State House of Assembly began on June 17, 2019, when it was inaugurated under controversial circumstances at night.

There were only nine out of 24 lawmakers-elect present, following an alleged proclamation by Obaseki.

The lawmakers who were not part of the process and the All Progressives Congress (APC), rejected the process and called on the governor to issue a fresh proclamation.

However, a Federal High Court in Rivers State barred Obaseki from doing so. Another court also barred the National Assembly from taking over the Edo Assembly.

This worsened the feud between Obaseki and his predecessor, Adams Oshiomhole, who was also the National Chairman of the APC.

Obaseki allegedly orchestrated Oshiomhole’s suspension from the party at the ward level. In revenge, Oshiomhole ensured that Obaseki did not clinch the APC governorship ticket and Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu won the primaries.

An attempt by the aggrieved lawmakers to be inaugurated was scuttled by men, claiming to be renovating the Assembly complex.

But the APC claimed the men were thugs hired by the governor who was afraid of being impeached.

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