News

Oko-Jumbo-Led Rivers Assembly Holds Sitting, Heads For Supreme Court

The leadership of the Rivers State House of Assembly, under Speaker Victor Oko-Jumbo, has announced plans to appeal the recent decision by the Court of Appeal in Abuja, which nullified the expulsion of Martin Amaewhule and 24 other members from the assembly.

The controversy began when the Rivers State High Court expelled Amaewhule and other members, a decision that was recently overturned by the Court of Appeal.

The appellate court ruled that the High Court lacked the jurisdiction to hear and decide on the matter, identified as SUIT NO PHC/1512/CS/2024.

During a plenary session held on Friday at the temporary chamber at the Government House in Port Harcourt, Speaker Oko-Jumbo expressed his disagreement with the appellate court’s judgment.

“We strongly believe that the Court of Appeal was in error,” he stated, emphasizing the assembly’s resolve to take the matter to the Supreme Court of Nigeria.

Oko-Jumbo informed the assembly that their legal team had already filed an appeal against the Court of Appeal’s decision. This move marks the next phase in the legal battle concerning the legitimacy of the assembly members’ expulsion and the jurisdiction of the courts.

Despite the ongoing legal and political turmoil, the assembly session proceeded to legislative matters, considering two significant bills.

The “Rivers State Emergency Management Agency Bill, 2024” and the “Rivers State Transport Reform Bill, 2024” were deliberated during the session.

These bills, sponsored by Sokari Goodboy and Deputy Speaker Adolphus Timothy respectively, aim to address critical areas of state management and transport reforms.

The full statement reads, “As the Whole World knows, on the 11th day of December, 2023, Martin Amaewhule and his 24 friends defected from the Peoples Democratic Party to the All Progressive Congress.

“On the 13th Day of December 2023 Rt. Hon Edison Ehie as the Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly declared the seats of Martin Amaewhule and 24 others in the RSHA Vacant.

“That the declaration by Rt. Hon Edison Ehie has not been set aside by any Court in Nigeria.

“When Martin Ameawhule and the 24 others in spite of their defection from the Peoples Democratic Party to the APC and their seats being declared Vacant, continued to parade as members of the RSHA, the legitimate members of RSHA filed suit no PHC/1512/CS/2024 against Martin Amaewhule & 24 others in the High Court of Rivers State, where the Court Made orders restraining Martin Amaewhule & 24 ORS

“Dissatisfied with the rulings of the Rivers State High Court in suit No PHC/ 1512/CS/2024, Martins Amaewhule & 24 ORS filed Appeal No. CA/PH/198/2024 at the Court of Appeal, Port Harcourt Division.

“Yesterday, the 4th of July, 2024, the Court of Appeal in its lead Judgement allowed the Appeal by Martin Ameawhule & 24 ORS on the ground that the Rivers State High Court lacked the Jurisdiction to hear and determine the case. Accordingly, the Court of Appeal struck out suit No. PHC/1512/CS/2024 and NOTHING MORE.

“The Court of Appeal did not make any declaration that Martin Amaewhule & 24 ORS did not defect from the PDP to APC.

“The Court of Appeal also did not make any declaration that Martin Amaewhule 24 ORS are still members of the RSHA.

“We strongly believe that the Court of Appeal was in error when it held that the Rivers State High Court lacked the Jurisdiction to hear and determine SUIT NO PHC/1512/CS/2024. Accordingly, we have instructed our lawyers and they have filed an appeal to the Supreme Court of Nigeria Challenging the Judgement of the Court of Appeal delivered on the 4th Day of July, 2024.

“There cannot be two Houses of Assembly in Rivers State or Indeed any State in Nigeria. This House of Assembly with me as the Speaker is the ONLY House of Assembly in Rivers State.

“Martin Amaewhule & 24 ORS in spite of all their pretences are no longer members of the Rivers State House of Assembly and they remain so until a Court of Competent Jurisdiction says otherwise.

“Once again, we the legitimate Members of the RSHA HEREBY call on the Independent National Electoral Commission to promptly conduct a bye-election to fill the vacant seats in the RSHA.

“We strongly urge the general public to ignore Martin Amaewhule & 24 ORS in their pretence that they are members of the Rivers State House of Assembly.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button