National News

Rivers Assembly: Oko-Jumbo rejects Appeal Court ruling, insist Amaewhule, 25 others are no longer members

By: Felix Ikpotor

Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly,Victor Oko-Jumbo has rejected the Appeal Court ruling which voided the restraining order of a Rivers State High Court baring Martin Amaewhule and 25 others from parading as members of the Assembly.

Oko-Jumbo during the sitting of the House Friday, said the Appellate Court erred by declaring that the Rivers State High Court lacks jurisdiction to entertain the suit.

He maintained that Amaewhule and 25 others are no longer members of the Rivers State House of Assembly, stressing that he has directed his lawyers to file an appeal at the Supreme Court.

While  insisting that he remains the only Speaker of the assembly, Oko-Jumbo recalled that the declaration of the seats of Amaewhule and 25 others vacant by former Speaker, Edison Ehie in December last year has not been voided by any court.

He said: “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.

“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.”

He said the Houses of Assembly in Rivers State as led by him (Oko-Jumbo) remains the only legitimate House and called on the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to conduct bye elections to fill the vacant seats.

“Martin Amaewhule and 24 others 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,” he said.

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