Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Rivers Assembly Suspends 3 LG bosses, Summons 9 Commissioners + Reactions

 RiversAssembly Suspends 3 LG bosses, Summons 9 Commissioners + Reactions chiomaandy.com
Rivers State House of Assembly, on Monday, suspended three caretaker committee chairmen over allegations of financial impropriety and insecurity in their councils.
The suspended caretaker committee chairmen are Mr Cassidy Ikegbedi, Ahoada East; Mr Ojukaye Amachree, Asari Toru, and Mr Derrick Mene for Khana Local Government Area.

The House, during its sitting presided over by the Deputy Speaker, Leyii Kwanee, also set up a committee to investigate allegations against the council chairmen.
The Assembly also summoned nine commissioners and four heads of ministries, agencies and departments to appear before it today.
Those to appear before the lawmakers are: Commissioners for Finance, Agriculture, Power, Health, Tourism, Information, Budget, Works and Transport.
Others to also appear are the Accountant-General, Chairmen of Board of Internal Revenue, Rivers State Assembly Service Commission and Secondary School Management Board.

Kwanii clarified that the reason for the action was for the assembly to get clarification from some of the commissioners on the economic position of the state, and not for the lawmakers to witch-hunt anyone.
“As an arm of government, we are not out to witch-hunt the executive. We are out to strengthen things. You are aware that the seventh assembly is gradually coming to an end. We have been seeing a lot of conflicting reports. The other day, the Commissioner for Information, Mrs. Ibim Semenitari, was on air saying that civil servants have been paid up to March. So, we feel very embarrassed as an arm of government,” he said.

Deputy Leader of the House, Nname Ewor, representing Ahoada East Constituency 1 in two motions he presented before the House, had expressed worries with the conflicting reports on the economy of the state.

Also, following allegations that the state assembly was having issues with the executive arm of government, the state government issued a statement denying any misunderstanding with the members of the State House of Assembly.

It further said that the state government appreciated the strategic role of the assembly in ensuring that government was held accountable to the electorates and would work with the assembly members to guaranty the rights of every Rivers people.

The statement signed by the State Commissioner for Information and Communications, Ibim Semenitari stated that Governor Rotimi Amaechi held members of the state assembly in high regard having served in that same House for eight years.

Meanwhile, one of the suspended Caretaker Committee Chairman of Ahoada East Local Government Area, Cassidy Ikegbidi, has expressed shock over the development.
Ikegbidi in an interview with newsmen in Port Harcourt said he was yet to recover from the gunshot wound he sustained when he was kidnapped last month.

He also denied the allegations leveled against.

“As I speak now, I am in the hospital because I was shot by my abductors. So, I am surprise to hear from one of my local government member that I have been suspended for reasons nobody invited me. I don’t know where the assembly man said I made away with some money. Is it in the bush where they kidnap me,” Ikegbidi said.

In his reaction, chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the area, Nwuze Umar has described the suspension of the Ikegbidi by the state Assembly barely a week after he was released from his kidnappers den as insensitive.

He said the issue of insecurity was a general concern and not peculiar to Ahoada East.

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