The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has sacked all the 16 members of the Plateau State House of Assembly who are members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for disobedience to court order and lack of political structure.
Meanwhile, a stalwart of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Professor John Wade, declared that the PDP deserves no sympathy because the party shot itself in the leg, while the State Commissioner of Information and Communications, Mr Musa Ashoms, described the recent judgment against the PDP as a temporary setback.
It will be recalled that prior to the last judgment, the Appeal Court had earlier sacked four members of House Representatives and two senators who are members of the PDP.
In a dramatic twist of event, Speaker of the House of State Assembly, Honourable Moses Sule, his deputy, and other principals of the House last week resigned, and Honourable Dewan Gabriel of the YPP was elected as the Speaker. The new Speaker, in turn, adjourned the sitting of the House indefinitely.
It was alleged that the change of guard in the House ahead of the Friday Judgment was to forestall the inauguration of the new members as there are wide spread insinuations that the new legislators might probe the financial activities of the Governor Muftwang-led administration in the past five months and possible impeachment before the Supreme Court judgment.
It was equally gathered that prior to the Friday Judgement, a returning member of the APC from the southern part of the state had been penciled down as the next speaker of the 24-member state Assembly.
Responding to the insinuation that the members have been giving the matching order to impeach the governor, the state publicity secretary of the APC, Mr Slyvanus Namang, said there was no brief to that effect, adding that it was concorted by the PDP to get the sympathy of the people of the state.
“We are law-abiding and believe in the rule of law and due process. It was concocted by the PDP to get the sympathy of the people.
There is no plan whatsoever in that regard,” he said.
On the new Speaker elected, Namang said it was a plan by the state government towards ensuring that the new members of the House are not sworn in, thus causing a constitutional crisis in the legislative arm of government.
According to him, to execute the ill-motivated script, as soon as the Speaker was sworn in on Tuesday, he immediately declared a 2-month recess until January 21st, 2024.
“This onslaught and legislative impunity have put paid to the speculations about the grand design by Governor Mutfwang to stall the inauguration and swearing in of the new members returned by the Court of Appeal, which is to be effected next week.”
Speaking with Sunday Tribune on the judgment and other previous ones against the PDP, the Director of Research and Documentation in the last APC administration, Professor John Wade, said the PDP deserves no sympathy for having shot itself in the foot.
He attributed the misfortune of the PDP to the arrogance of some elders of the party who believe that they hold the ace as far as the party in the state is concerned and, in their process, abandoned quality advice from some elder statesmen.
“They have shot themselves in the leg; they ignored quality advice. But unfortunately, they underestimated people, their silence, and even the law as it is. The Electoral Act today is not the same as it was five years ago, so the PDP didn’t see all these things, and again, in politics, being a game of intrigue, your detractors who also want power will sit down quitely watching you, even the mistakes you have made. That is what plays out in Kano.
“We have been watching them because, based on our research, we know that at the end of the day, the justice that we would get will be too tight for them to get any justice. To me, they shot themselves.
“And again, the lawmakers who have made their names like Beni Lar are unfortunately swept away by the wind. You cannot sympathize with them because if they were courageous enough, they should have told the leader of the party that giving the position of the party is not proper. Like Edward predicated, today he stands vindicated.”
However, the State Commissioner of Information and Communications, Mr. Musa Ashoms, said it was appalling and disheartening that some people, especially the APC, claimed the PDP has no structure in the state.
Ashoms said the prevailing political situation in Plateau State was a temporary setback for the PDP and expressed optimism that the party would get victory at the Supreme Court.
“So it is quite disheartening that meddlesome interlopers will now be speaking with venom and anger because they want to just snatch our mandates at all costs, so it is disheartening that they are misinforming the general public. The reality on the ground is that the PDP has a solid structure on the Plateau, and His Excellency from Osun State was the chairman of the congresses that brought Chris Hassan into power,” he said. (Sunday Tribune)