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Aftermath of Defections; Imo Speaker Panics, As Impeachment Looms


Aftermath of Defections; Imo Speaker Panics, As Impeachment Looms

…Opposition Lawmakers In Secret Meeting

The days of Rt Hon Kennedy Ibeh supervising the affairs of Imo State House of Assembly are to be counted if recent developments in the state legislature are to be reckoned with.

Ibe who became the Speaker of Imo Assembly, November last year, may face unfavorable music laced with removal songs, which had been afflicting the 9th House since inception in 2019. 

It would be recalled that the first Speaker who came on board in 2019, Rt Hon Chiji Collins was impeached for Rt Hon Paul Emeziem to come in while the incumbent, Rt Hon Ibe replaced the former in similar fashion. 

From what Trumpeta learnt, a new Speaker may likely emerge before long as majority of the members apart from not being comfortable with the leadership style of the Obowo State Constituency representative, are reported to be plotting for a new number one lawmaker to take over affairs of the House from him. 

Only late last week, this newspaper scooped from reliable sources in the state  of secret meetings by some of the aggrieved lawmakers where issues related to the incompetence of Speaker Ibe and his excesses dominated discussion.

The members were said to have cried out over alleged high handedness of the Speaker against his colleagues as he was accused of being insensitive to their plights. 

The aggrieved lawmakers were said to have expressed dissatisfaction over  the manner he has shut the door of the House of Assembly against elected members like him. The cases of the removed Ngor Okpala member who was of the PDP, Hon Tochi Okereke and that of Nkwerre State Constituency, Hon Obinna Okwarah were raised. More so, the continued clampdown on the Members for Orsu and Mbaitoli State Constituencies, respectively, Hon Ekene Nnodumele, and Hon Okey Onyekanma who Ibe has kept off from the House activities after indefinite suspension hammer attracted concern. 

Members also accused the Speaker of betrayal and not catering for their welfare as their allowances are not properly taken care of by the state government.

What pained the House members, to think of removal option,  especially, those of the APC was the manner the party’s primaries were conducted some months ago which saw majority of them lose chances of gaining the ruling party’s ticket to run for 2023 elections. 

Investigations by Trumpeta revealed that apart from the Speaker, Deputy Speaker and Majority Leader including few of the lawmakers in Ibeh’s caucus, others of APC extraction, in total disregard to earlier agreements and assurances from the governor couldn’t obtain either a return ticket or flag of the APC to run for election. 

The outcome of the primaries has seen most of the APC ticket losers in Imo Assembly move into other parties like APGA and Labour party to run for election.

These movements further indicates that Ibe has lost grip of the support of the members as those who left had no courtesy to come to the floor of the House to officially declare their defections from APC to other parties.

As preparations for campaigns enter gear five ahead next year elections, Trumpeta can reveal that the ruling party has lost many of its members in the House making the speaker vulnerable to impeachment. The former Majority Leader, Hon Uche Ogbuagu has dumped APC to labour party to run for Mbaitoli/ Ikeduru federal constituency while his colleagues; Honourables  Ngozi Obiefule and Arthur Egwim are for Isu/Njaba/Nkwerre/Nwangele and Ideato Federal Constituencies respectively, under APGA. Others who want a return to the House of Assembly in 2023 through other party means other than APC are Nnodumele (APGA) and Hon Herclues Okoro of Ohaji/Egbema under Labour party. 

Aside from the aggrieved lawmakers who lost the APC tickets, Trumpeta learnt that few of those believed to be  Ibe’s camp  are not happy with him for allegedly running an awkward style of presiding the affairs of the House since he became the head. It was further learnt that a powerful playmaker in the House close to the governor (names withheld) who facilitated his becoming the Speaker is no longer on the same page with him. 

Already a whirlwind that blows no one any good is already spreading across the state legislature and it is only a matter of time for it to produce expected casualties as usual.

Source ImoTrumpeta

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