By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Members of the Abia State House of Assembly on Thursday impeached their Speaker, Mr Martins Okechukwu Azubuike.
The Speaker was removed from the position by 20 out of the 24 members of the Assembly and was immediately replaced by Mr Kennedy Njoku, a member representing Osisioma North State Constituency.
Mr Azubuike was accused of failing to ensure equitable distribution of position among members of the Assembly.
His colleagues accused him of being an autocratic leader, who fails to give room for others to share their views.
The Deputy Speaker, Mr Cosmos Ndukwe, who presided over the meeting, said the 20 signatories had exceeded the mandatory 16 required by law and moved for nomination of a new Speaker.
Moving the motion for his impeachment, a member representing Obingwa East State Constituency and Deputy Majority leader of the House, Mr Solomon Akpulonu, alleged that the Speaker has remained insensitive to the rights and needs of members and general staff of the Assembly.
According to him Mr Azubuike’s “autocratic practices have brought the Abia State House of Assembly on collision course with other arms of government and agencies of Abia State. He has abused the office of the speaker by using same for personal and private political interest.”
He said further that, “It is therefore in observation of these acts of gross misconduct that we owe the state House of Assembly and Abia State this constitutional service.
“Therefore pursuant to section 92 sub section 2 (c) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended, we the members of the Abia State House of Assembly resolved to remove and hereby remove Rt Hon Martins Azubuike, member representing Isiala Ngwa North as Speaker of Abia State House of Assembly.”
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