Rivers AG Dismisses Reports On Amaewhule, Others Being PDP State Assembly Members

Reports that Martin Amaewhule and 26 others were confirmed as members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Rivers State House of Assembly by a High Court in Port Harcourt have been denied by Dagogo Iboroma, SAN, the Commissioner for Justice and Attorney General of the Rivers State.

Iboroma made clear at a Port Harcourt press conference that the lawsuit, DHC/20/CS/204, did not aim to declare their seats empty.

He said that abuse of the legal system and lack of locus standi robbed the trial court of the authority to decide the case, which is why it was dismissed.

Iboroma said that on December 11, 2023, Martin Amaewhule, the speaker of the Pro-Nyesom Wike MPs, and his 26 colleagues had defected from the PDP to the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC).

He says that an affidavit filed by Amaewhule for himself and his colleagues in suit number FHC/ABJ/1681/CS/2023 before Justice Donatus Okorowo of the Federal High Court in Abuja documents the defection.

According to the Rivers State Attorney General, the Federal High Court is still hearing the lawsuit that included Amaewhule’s affidavit.

He contended that the Federal High Court alone has the power to decide whether the legislators are still PDP and Rivers State House of Assembly members under Section 272(3) of the 1999 Constitution.

Though he said the substantive lawsuit has not been appealed, he said there is a substituting order of interlocutory injunction in suit number PHC/1512/CS/2024 prohibiting Martin Amaewhule and his 26 colleagues from serving as lawmakers in Rivers State.

He thus encouraged the public to ignore claims that Martin Amaewhule and 26 other people have been confirmed as Peoples Democratic Party members and Rivers State House of Assembly members.

Amaewhule and the other 26 members of the Rivers State House of Assembly are still PDP members, according to a ruling by the Rivers State High Court in Port Harcourt earlier.

Justice Okogbule Gbasam of the Rivers State High Court ruled earlier on Monday in Port Harcourt that the claimants had not produced evidence that Amaewhule and the other legislators had defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Justice Gbasam went on to say that television ceremonies and even verbal declarations were insufficient evidence of membership in a party and that membership can only be established by being included on the party’s registry or by membership card.

Interestingly, the PDP was added as the fourth defendant after filing a motion to be included in the case.

As Rivers state government members are still PDP members and their names are still on the party’s membership register, Justice Gbasam further ruled that the state administration is required to abide by all laws approved by the Assembly.

Moreover, he maintained that because the state government is still a PDP member and has not lost its seats, it is subject to the legislation passed by the Assembly.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: