Federal lawmakers consider taking over Edo State House of Assembly as Obaseki/Oshiomhole spat deepens

NIGERIA'S Federal House of Representatives is considering a motion to take over the functions of the Edo State House of Assembly following protracted crisis that has resulted a paralysis since the last elections.


Since May 29 when the new members of the Edo State House of Assembly were sworn-in, the parliament has been engulfed in acrimony as two separate factions fight for supremacy. One faction is said to be loyal to Governor Godwin Obaseki, while the other is loyal to former governor and current All Progressives Congress (APC) national chairman Adams Oshiomhole.


Last month, nine of the 24 elected members of the assembly were said to have met to elect Hon Frank Okiye as the speaker of the Edo State House of Assembly. Hon Okiye is an Obaseki loyalist and the members of the Oshiomhole faction of the assembly have refused to recognise him as speaker.


With the impasse paralysing activities in Benin, the Federal House of Representatives set up a 13-member ad-hoc committee to investigate the crisis. This decision to look at what is going on in Edo State was raised after federal lawmakers from the state Julius Ihonvbere, Peters Akpatason and Johnson Oghuma, raised a motion about the during plenary by the House of Representatives yesterday.


In Abuja, the National Assembly lawmakers are now currently deliberating on the motion which may lead to the takeover of the functions of the Edo State House of Assembly. Hon Okiye welcomed the development but urged federal lawmakers not to be used by anyone to achieve a personal agenda.


He added that the Edo assembly was duly inaugurated on June 17 and that the business of law-making has been going on without any hindrances. Hon Okiye also drew the attention of the House of Representatives to a pending suit which he said barred the national leadership of the APC, the inspector-general of police and others from interfering in the affairs of the Edo State House of Assembly.