Stop acting like a despot, APC cautions Fubara

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The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has criticised the Governor of Rivers state, Siminalayi Fubara for declaring the 27 House of Assembly members who defected from Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The party also took a swipe at the governor for abrogating the nation’s constitution and turning himself into “despot-in-chief of the Rivers State House of Assembly.”
Addressing newsmen at the national secretariat of the party in Abuja, APC national publicity secretary, Felix Morka, called on Fubara to submit himself to the dictates of the Constitution and the rule of law.
The governing party accused the governor of expanding the state’s resources without regard to appropriation and public procurement laws.
Morka said: “The governor has unlawfully withheld local government’s funds as a punitive measure against perceived opponents, and only recently, directed that all heads and officials of the 23 Local Government Areas should ignore the summons of the State Assembly as he threatened to sack officials who flouted his directive.
“Governor Fubara cannot abrogate the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. He cannot be governor and be despot-in-chief of the Rivers State House of Assembly, at the same time. Attempting to impose an illegal 3-man House of Assembly is executive lawlessness in the extreme. Governor Fubara’s quest to repudiate the Constitution and govern in denial of the existence of the state legislature is, in and of itself, among other grounds, an impeachable offence.
“We strongly counsel Governor Fubara to submit himself to the dictates of the Constitution and the rule of law. In any and all contests between Governor Fubara and the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Constitution shall prevail, always. The good people of Rivers state deserve so much more than the seemingly unending chicanery of Governor Fubara.”
On Fubara’s declaration that the House of Assembly is non-existent is based on the fact that the 27 members who decamped from PDP to APC have lost their seats, Morka maintained that the governor was wrong and being misled.
Morka added: “The Assembly does not exist at the governor’s pleasure or fanciful whims. The legislature is at the core of the idea of democracy. It is co-equal with the executive and judicial arms of government. The constitutionally entrenched principle of separation of powers among the three arms of government guarantees essential checks and balances required to ensure observance of the rule of law. The rule of law is indispensable to democracy and constitutional order.
“If his declaration that the House of Assembly is nonexistent is based on the fact that the 27 members who decamped from PDP to APC have lost their seats, then Governor Fubara is sorely misled.”
Buttressing his assertion, the APC spokesperson said, “To be clear, the 27 Assembly members did not lose their membership of the Assembly by virtue of their decampment. There is nothing homeostatic about Section 109(1)(g) of the Constitution. It is not self-executing. The Proviso to the said Section 109(1) (g) established exceptional grounds for the applicability of Section 109(1)(g).
“Section 109(1) states: A member of a House of Assembly shall vacate his seat in the House if – (S.109(1)(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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