Governor Mbah's Plot To Displace Principal Officers Of Enugu Assembly Sufferers Setback.

By Mbam Ogodo
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The plot by Governor Peter Mbah of Enugu state to force the Speaker of the House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Uche Ugwu sack Rt. Hon. Iloabuchi Aniagu, a 4th term member of the House who was the minority leader when PDP was minority in the House and should be majority leader now that PDP are in the majority suffered set back during the last plenary.

The Governor wanted Hon. Johnson Ani, the former majority leader of the House from Labour Party (who abandoned his Party and defected) to the PDP as the new PDP majority leader of a party he just joined few weeks ago .

During the plenary session of 16/5/2024, Hon. Onyechi raised a point of order, maintaining that the House was not properly constituted as both the majority and minority leadership are unknown. Though overuled by the speaker, the incident caused us to investigate deeper into the activities going on the State Assembly.

It was revealed that the Governor also wanted the Speaker to remove Hon. Ekwueme Chukwuma of Uzo-Uwani, who fought vigorously for the PDP to win the last election. To remove him as the Chief (Majority) whip and announce Hon. Ejike Eze of Igboeze North 1, who just joined the PDP as the new Chief Whip of the House. Among other changes.

This decision didn’t go down well with the Speaker who believe that the Governor, and rightly so, have a penchant for favoring the defected LP House members against the members of his own party, the PDP.

The Speaker rather informed the PDP principal officers to be removed of the plans and directive from the governor. Since then the House have been in chaos and the situation has not been easy to manage. Some staff and political appointees reveal that for the past 8/6 weeks, after every plenary, the members shout and fight over unknown issues during their executive sessions. Obviously, this matter has generated a lot of tension and the speaker is helpless on how best to handle the situation.

One of the PDP principal officers who spoke on a condition anonymity said “We are tired of Gov. Peter Mbah and his selfishness. I know how I fought for me and him to win this election. These LP guys fought him to a standstill and I have the videos. How can he turn around and choose them over us. Just how? Strangers do not come in and become kings in a kingdom they know nothing about. We cannot say for sure if we are still in the same party, may God help us.”

Another female member(name withheld) lashed out “If this is done Peter Mbah shall know no peace. Do you know we can hardly see this man but these LP guys see him at will. He has refused to see the House members since his Swearing-in. The PDP house members cannot even access him. He doesn’t listen to the speaker or the leadership, he does only his will as if we are intruders. He is not a good man but let’s see how it goes.

One of the Labour Party members have also argued that there was no basis for the Speaker to withhold the pronouncement of who the new Minority Leaders were. He said “we have submitted the list of our new principal officer/leadership to the speaker, we have even met with him and he told us to write which we did, yet he sat on it. The Assembly has become an Assembly of Chickens. We are planning to go to court to challenge the reason the Speaker and his party the PDP, will not allow us the minority to have our constitutionally guaranteed leadership in the State Assembly. If it’s the Governor that is behind this he should know that this is democracy and rule of Law not tyranny or dictatorship.”

Efforts to reach the Speaker has proved abortive and numerous of the other house members were evasive when we tried to get their perspective.

What is obvious is that there is no peace in the State Assembly but uneasy calm. The Governor seem to be suffocating the House and it’s only a matter of time, like a time-bomb, the House will definitely explode.