- Samson Omale
Full Story: How 7 Lawmakers Impeached Plateau House of Assembly Speaker
All week, they were rumors and speculations making the rounds that the Speaker of the Plateau state house of Assembly, Hon. Ayuba Nuhu Abok is likely to be impeached.
The Speculations however got heightened on Wednesday night when a secret meeting between seven members of the house of assembly and some top members of the executive was leaked to several social media platforms.
In that meeting, plans were perfected on how the seven lawmakers in that meeting will be guided and securely led to the assembly complex to carry out the impeachment process.
DSS and Police
As early as 6am Thursday morning, Police and the operatives of the department of state services has barricaded all roads leading to the Plateau state house of assembly complex confirming the impeachment plot.
Correspondents of Silveribird Television and TVC news were harassed by the DSS who confiscated their phones and made to delete pictures taken of their presence at the entrance of the assembly complex.
A member of the house, Gwottson Fom representing Jos South constituency told journalists that the police who were drafted to the house of assembly to aid the impeachment process were deployed from the government house.
Once the lawmakers were safely in the chambers of the complex, eight of them in total, the Deputy Speaker, Saleh Yipmong began the proceeding to impeach the speaker.
One of them, Hon. Dasun Philips however opposed the move saying it was against the house rules and norms to carry out such action. He was beaten subsequently and claimed to have sustained some injuries.
The deputy speaker Saleh Yipmong alongside Ibrahim Baba Hassan(Jos north, north) Naanlong Daniel (Mikang) Livinus Soja (Shendam) Mavo Yahahya (Wase), Eric Dakogol Quanpan(North) Balo Mohammed (Quanpan South) Yanga Abdul (mangu south) and Sanda Yakubu (Pengana) thereafter passed a vote of no confidence on the speaker and thereafter passed a motion to impeach him.
Shortly after, the Member representing Pengana constituency, Hon Yakubu Sanda was thereafter elected as speaker.
The Plateau state house of assembly is made up of 24 members. The house rules says two thirds of the members(16) must be available to effect an impeachment of the Speaker and deputy Speaker.
Lawmakers who were elected under the platform of the Peoples democratic party were denied entry into the assembly during the impeachment process
A petition went viral on social media in the early hours of Wednesday by a group under the aegis of Youths Rights Against Corruption (YRAC) accusing the speaker of corruption.
The group said it has submitted a petition to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) against the Speaker accusing him of several allegations, including abuse of office and financial misappropriation.
The group also demanded that the speaker should immediately step down from his position pending the completion of investigation.
The Executive Director, YRAC, Mr Abednego Musa, signed the petition titled “Petition Against Plateau State House of Assembly Speaker, Nuhu Abok Ayuba, On Gross Financial Misconduct, Criminal Breach Of Public Trust And Abuse Of Office”.
The speaker and the Assembly are yet to react to the development.
Mr Nanbol Daniel (PDP-Langtang North Central) had said that the impeachment would not hold because it did not follow the House Rules on impeachment of speaker and deputy speaker.
The lawmaker representing Rukuba/Irigwe constituency in the state House of Assembly, Musa Agah described the action of the lawmakers as “the height of illegality”
Agah said, “It was this morning (Thursday) that few members rushed to the Plateau state House of Assembly as early as 6 am. You know the state House of Assembly is made up of 24 members and the constitutional requirement for the removal of the Speaker is 2/3 majority which is 16 members.
“So, eight lawmakers rushed to the Assembly this morning against the House rules that say that plenary commences from 9 am and even if there is going to be an extraordinary sitting, the Speaker is the one who is empowered to convene the house.: He went Further to say, "that did not happen. When some of us got wind of what was happening, we rushed to the Assembly complex only to discover that Security operatives had barricaded everywhere. Some of us were stopped from gaining access to the Assembly complex while other were harassed".