Governor Willie Obiano has allegedly succeeded in getting the Nigerian police to meddle in the face off ongoing in the rescue for the soul of the Anambra state House of Assembly.
But the Nigeria police in a statement made available to Odogwu media in Awka last night said it sealed the House to avoid security breaches.
The statement by SP Haruna Mohammed, PPRO Anambra State Police Command, for-commissioner of Police Anambra State Command said the seal was done by 6 pm on Thursday.
The statement read in part: ‘’Sequel to the breaches of public peace at the Anambra State House of Assembly Complex on the 15th November, 2018,the Leadership of the Assembly has requested for the Police to take over, seal off and secure the entire premises of the Assembly in an official letter to the Commissioner of Police.
‘’The Anambra State Police Command wishes to inform the general Public that it has sealed off the Assembly Complex with effect from 6:00pm of Thursday 15th November, 2018 as a proactive measure to avert possible breakdown of law and order in the Assembly.
‘’ The Command implores members of the Public to stay away from the House of Assembly premises till further notice. The Command solicits the co-operation of Ndi Anambra in this regard and further assures all citizens /residents of its determination to provide adequate security in the State, please’’.
Meanwhile, the resumed sitting of the Anambra State House of Assembly on Thursday assumed violent dimension as policemen blocked the entrance to the premises, while they also sprayed teargas into the atmosphere.
The sitting was the first after the Speaker of the House, Rita Maduagwu, was impeached on Tuesday, but she claimed that “They need two-thirds of our members to impeach the Speaker or the governor,” and that since they did not achieve that, “So, I’m still the Speaker.”
Sequel to her purported impeachment on Tuesday, a member of the House, Ikem Uzoezie of Aguta 11 Constituency was nominated as the new Speaker.
But Maduagwu later addressed the Press and said she remained the Speaker of the House, describing those who impeached her as “rascals.”
No fewer than 300 policemen manned the Assembly area from the Alex Ekwueme Square entrance of the complex as from 8am.
Workers of the judiciary and others who had any business in the area were denied entrance.
Trouble began when a lawmaker mobilised some supposed supporters to the House, allegedly to show solidarity for Maduagwu.
Police, however, repelled the protesters with tear gas.
Consequently, the entire environment was filled with tear gas as policemen attempted to ward off everybody in the area.
Journalists and other onlookers scampered for safety.
A member of the House, Mrs. Beverly Nkemdiche, who was affected by the teargas shouted and screamed on end, “They have killed me! I’m a member of the House. Please, don’t kill me…”
APGA suspends 3 lawmakers
This is coming as the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, has suspended three lawmakers for allegedly spearheading the campaign to change the leadership of the Anambra State House of Assembly.
The Chairman of the party in Anambra, Sir Norbert Obi, made the announcement at a news conference in Awka on Thursday.
The suspended members are Mr Ikem Uzoezie, Mr Harford Oseke and Mr Victor Okoye, representing, Aguata 2, Awka South 2 and Anambra West State Constituencies, respectively.
Sir Obi, who urged the aggrieved and warring members of the party to sheath their swords to avoid escalation, described the trio as ringleaders of the attempted impeachment saga.
“Granted the fact that we had problems during the just- concluded party primaries in the state, it is not enough to pull the party down the more when the party has set up a reconciliation committee.
“It is, therefore, the position of the party that all aggrieved members should sheathe their swords as failure to do so will amount to setting our own house on fire.
“Be that as it may, the three ringleaders of the attempted impeachment saga, namely Ikem Uzoezie, Harford Osseke and Victor Okoye are hereby suspended from the party, pending when they will appear before the disciplinary committee of the party,” he said.
It will be recalled that the House on Nov. 13 impeached its Speaker, Hon. Rita Mmaduagwu, and elected Ikem Uzoezie as the new speaker.
Obiano had in far way France commended the lawmakers for reissiting the impeachment but the war for the soul of Anambra state House of Assembly is not yet over.
Uzoezie garners support of other lawmakers , sat for 1 hour
As well the factional Speaker of the Anambra State House of Assembly, Hon Ikem Uzoezie on Thursday held a plenary session with 25 out of the 30 members of the house amidst tight security.
Before the session, the resumed sitting of the house on Thursday assumed a violent dimension as policemen blocked the entrance to the premises, while they also shot tear-gas canisters into the atmosphere.
Sequel to her purported impeachment on Tuesday, a member of the House, Ikem Uzoezie of Aguta II Constituency was nominated as the new Speaker.
Over 300 policemen manned the Assembly area from the Alex Ekwueme Square entrance of the complex as from 8am.
All Progressives Grand Alliance House of Representatives candidate allegedly mobilised some supposed supporters to the House to show solidarity for Maduagwu.
When calm returned, the lawmakers gained entrance into the legislative complex and held a sitting presided over by Uzoezie.
The lawmakers were 25 in number during the sitting.
The embattled Speaker, Rita Maduagwu, who was said to be in her office at the Assembly complex was absent at the plenary.
The sitting lasted for an hour.
Addressing journalists, Uzoezie said the new face of legislature in Anambra would ensure quality representation of constituents, quality legislation and maintenance of peace in the state.
He said, “We held the sitting peacefully despite the earlier turmoil, having 25 members out of 30 legislators of the house sitting at the same time.
“The Deputy Speaker, Mr Hafford Oseke, Majority leader Victor Okoye, Minority leader Mr Onyebuchi Offor and other members were present during the session and the sitting went uninterrupted.
“We have adjourned to November 20.”