Adeyinka Adedipe, Benin
The Speaker, Edo State House of Assembly, Mr Marcus Onobun, has said Governor Godwin Obaseki had no hand in his emergence as Speaker, crediting his colleagues for the feat.
Onabun said the decision to make him Speaker was the collective decision of the members of the House, adding that the House would not hesitate to discharge its statutory functions of offering checks and balances to the executive in a non-confrontational manner.
“Governor Obaseki did not mastermind my emergence as Speaker. We are an arm of government and independent. The House is operating without interference from any quarter,” he said.
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Onabun said the House had reunited and also gone further to commute the impeachment of the former Speaker to resignation.
On the fate of the 14 All Progressives Congress lawmakers who had yet to be sworn in, the Speaker said the seats of the embattled lawmakers had since been declared vacant.
He called on the Independent National Electoral Commission to, as a matter of urgency, conduct an election to fill the vacancies as the job of 24 lawmakers had become a herculean task for nine persons.
“We look forward to having a complete House and that is why I want to use this opportunity to call on INEC to quickly conduct an election to fill the vacancies and help the House complete the 24 constituencies represented,” he said.