I’m still Rivers speaker, Owaji- Ibani insists
THE Speaker, Rivers State House of Assembly, Mr. Ikuinyi
Owaji-Ibani, said on Monday that he remained the speaker
of the legislature despite Monday’s court ruling that nullified
his election and that of 19 other lawmakers.
Owaji-Ibani maintained that neither him nor his fellow
lawmakers had been sacked based on the judgment
delivered by the Rivers State Election Petitions Tribunal.
He explained that though the tribunal had made its decision,
he had filed an appeal against the ruling, adding that he and
other lawmakers, whose elections were nullified, were still
members of the House.
The Speaker maintained that he and the State Governor,
Chief Nyesom Wike, were freely elected by Rivers people
during the last general election.
appealed against the judgment of the lower court and that if
it comes to Andoni where I come, I know my people and my
people know me.
“Going by the several judgments given by the different
panels at the Rivers State Election Petitions Tribunal, I
would say that the Rt. Hon. Ikuinyi Owaji-Ibani, the Speaker
of the Rivers State House of Assembly, was not sacked by
any election petition tribunal.
“What happened was that a tribunal gave a ruling in its
opinion against my election that of 19 other members of the
legislature and none of the members were also sacked by
the other members are still members of the Rivers State
House of Assembly,” Owaji-Ibani stressed.
Expressing his faith in the judiciary, the speaker described
the judiciary as the foundation of every good society.
He pointed that a former Chairman of the Independent
National Electoral Commission, Professor Attahiru Jega,
had adjudged the election in Rivers free and fair.
“In the circumstance, I do not believe that the judiciary as
one of the key institutions of the state can subsume itself
and allow personal interests to override its very essence,
the essence of having the judiciary in the polity to make
sure that everyone is equal before the law,” Owaji-Ibani