- ‘13 lawmakers may backpedal’
From Umar Dankano, Yola
Following the inability of the Clerk to the Adamawa state Assembly, Mr. Francis Gbensenso, to personally serve impeachment notice on the state governor Murtala Nyako and his deputy, Bala Ngilari, the Assembly has resolved to do same through the media.
This is coming as there were insinuations in some quarters that 13 of the 25 lawmakers who resolved to impeach the governor and his deputy may have backpedaled on the plot.
The clerk explained on Friday that his office has found it difficult to serve the impeachment notice on Nyako and Ngilari because they have sealed off their offices since the directive was given by the Assembly.
He said that he had made several futile attempts to deliver the letters due to the evasive disposition of the people concerned.
Investigations however revealed that both Nyako and his deputy have been out of the state. Ngilari was said to have travelled out of the country for medical check-up.
But constitutional lawyer, Barr. Sunday Wugira, has said it would be null and void if the notices are served the governor and his deputy on the pages of newspapers.
He said: “If the House should service Nyako and his deputy impeachment notice through newspapers, it will becomes invalid”.
According to him, Section 188 sub-section 2 (b) of the Constitution, says that the Speaker of the Assembly shall, within the seven days of the receipt of notice, cause a copy of the notice to be served on the holder of the office and not through the media.
Meanwhile, 13 of the state lawmakers calling for the impeachment of the governor and his deputy had allegedly backed out of the plot following the intervention of prominent Nigerians, including notable emirs from the north, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and former EFCC boss, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu.
Investigation revealed that the battle ground on the impeachment notice has been shifted from Yola to Abuja, where the governor and other political actors in the state met to resolve their differences.
Sources privy to the development within the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) revealed that the high-stake intervention of major stakeholders of the party has started yielding positive results as 11 members of the House of Assembly have been convinced to drop the impeachment bid.
The impeachment move was endorsed by 19 out of the 25 members of the all-PDP House of Assembly, meaning that six members have not appended their signatures to the impeachment notice.
But the refusal of the Speaker of the House to append his signature to the impeachment notice has rankled many because he was seen to be the brain behind the impeachment move, and expected to be the major beneficiary. If it sailed through, he would be the acting governor.
When contacted, Fwa said she was bereaved of a loved one and was not in the mood to comment on the issue.
But the Chief Press Secretary to the Adamawa Speaker, Mr. Solomon Kumangar, expressed doubts about the withdrawal, saying “I am not aware that any member has backed out from the move but you should ask those making the insinuation to mention the names of those who backed out.
“It is apparent that people are ignorant about House resolutions because whenever resolutions are passed no one can infringe on them as they are irreversible”, Kumangar said.