Fubara’s Impeachment: APC desperate to annex Rivers — PDP

APC and PDP flags

The national leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has accused the All Progressives Congress (APC) of being desperate to annex Rivers State following the directive given by its state chapter to the House of Assembly to commence the impeachment process against Governor Siminalayi Fubara.

The APC state chairman, Tony Okocha, gave the directive during a press conference in Port Harcourt on Tuesday.

Recall that 27 lawmakers defected from the PDP to the APC following the crisis between Fubara and his predecessor, now minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Nyesom Wike.

They have since taken action, which the governor interpreted as undermining his authority.

Following their stance against him,

Fubara has now said that he regards the assembly members as non-existent, maintaining that, out of magnanimity, he had only provided them the opportunity to “float.”

Addressing a press conference on the matter at the PDP national secretariat in Abuja on Wednesday, the national publicity secretary, Debo Ologunagba, warned the APC to perish the thought of impeaching the governor.

He described the chapter APC chairman’s directive as delusional and hallucinatory, saying that such a reckless and unwarranted statement

“exposes the vile desperation of the APC, which is roundly rejected in Rivers State, to use violence, coercion and bullying to undermine the will of the people and forcefully take over the state.”

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The party spokesman added: “The fact that the Rivers State APC chairman, in his warped imagination, thinks he can direct impeachment proceeding against a duly elected state governor not only shows the level of APC’s arrogance and condescension for the people of Rivers State but also further confirms APC’s desperation to forcefully annex their democratic rights under the Constitution.”

The PDP reminded its former members that, having defected to the APC, they are no longer members of the legislature, going by the provisions of the Constitution.

Ologunagba added: “In any event, the individuals that the Rivers State APC chairman directed to commence impeachment proceedings against Governor Fubara are not legally members of the Rivers State House of Assembly and cannot contemplate or exercise such powers under the law.

“These individuals, by virtue of Section 109 (1) (g) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), have since vacated and lost their seats, rights, privileges, recognition and obligations accruable to members of the Rivers State House of Assembly after their defection from the PDP, the political Party platform upon which they were elected into the Rivers State House of Assembly

“For emphasis, Section 109 (1) (g) of the 1999 Constitution provides that: ‘a member of a House of Assembly shall vacate his seat in the House if… (g) being a person whose election to the House of Assembly was sponsored by a political Party, he becomes a member of another political party before the expiration of the period for which that House was elected…’

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“It should be noted that Section 109 (1) (g) of the Constitution is self-executory. The import of this provision is that the members of the Rivers State House of Assembly who defected have vacated their seats by reason of that defection.

“The unlawful directive by the Rivers State APC Chairman to these individuals to commence an impeachment proceeding against the Governor is, therefore, a brazen call for anarchy as it amounts to an attempt to forcefully overthrow a democratic Order in clear violation of Section 1 sub-section 2 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).

“For clarity, Section 1 Sub-section 2 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) provides, ‘The Federal Republic of Nigeria shall not be governed, nor shall any person or group of persons take control of the government of Nigeria or any part thereof, except in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution.’”

The PDP drew the attention of the Inspector General of Police (IGP) to the subversive utterances of the APC chairman in Rivers State, which, it observed, are capable of triggering crisis and derailing the Democratic Order in the country.

The PDP megaphone added: “The APC must perish the thought of forcefully taking over Rivers State, as such is a direct assault on the sensibility of the people, which will be resisted firmly.

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“The APC Chairman in Rivers State should come to terms with the fact that Rivers State is home to the PDP and that the people of Rivers State are not ready to put their destiny in the hands of a corrupt, oppressive, and anti-people special purpose vehicle like the APC.

“The national leadership of the PDP expresses appreciation to the people of Rivers State for always standing with the PDP and urges them to continue to resist the APC in its vicious attempt to inject violence and destabilise the state.”

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