Forgery: Any Attempt To Malign Ekweremadu Would Be Resisted By S'East — Ohanaeze Ndigbo


The Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, have condemned the police harassment of the Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu under the guise of investigating the alteration of the Senate’s standing rules.
Also folowing in the condemnation is the main opposition, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Governors’ Forum.
Ohanaeze Ndigbo yesterday came in defence of Ekweremadu, warning that any attempt to malign him would be stoutly resisted by the people of the South-east zone.
Secretary General of the organisation, Dr. Joe Nwaorgu, who made this known while reacting to media reports regarding the alleged threat on the life of the lawmaker, said any attempt to either ridicule or tarnish the integrity of Ekweremadu on account of his election as a presiding officer of the Senate would not be tolerated.
The organisation said anybody threatening to harm Ekweremadu on account of the position he currently occupies should be ready to face the consequences, as he enjoys the strong support of his people who are ready to defend him anytime and any day.
Nwaorgu said that it was a well known fact that Ndigbo voted massively for the PDP in the last election and they are ready to stand by those they elected to represent them at various levels of government.
The allegation of forgery of the Senate’s standing rules was first raised by Senator Kabiru Marafa (Zamfara Central) on the floor of the Senate on June 10, 24 hours after the inauguration of the Eighth Senate and election of its presiding officers – Senate President Bukola Saraki and Ekweremadu as his deputy.
Marafa also restated the allegation through another point of order on June 23.
But in response to Marafa’s point of order, Ekweremadu had explained that every edition of the Senate standing orders was only valid for a tenure of four years.
According to him, it is the tradition of the management of the National Assembly to always hand a new edition of the orders to every senator on the day of inauguration of a new Senate.
He added that the 2011 edition could not have been valid in 2015 for a new legislative assembly.
Although Marafa was ruled out of order by Saraki, another All Progressives Congress (APC) senator, Suleiman Hunkuyi, opted to take the matter further as the Secretary of Senate Unity Forum, a group loyal to Senator Ahmad Lawan, by petitioning the Inspector General of Police (IG), Solomon Arase, alleging forgery and calling for a thorough investigation.
Read The Statement From Ohanaeze Ndigbo In Part…………………………..
“We are watching closely what is happening at the national level and we want to let the world know that we are solidly behind our son, Senator Ike Ekweremadu.
“I am saying it loud and clear that Senator Ekweremadu, who was duly elected by his colleague as Deputy President of the Senate, is owned by a people and his people, Ndigbo, are solidly behind him because they (Ndigbo) voted for the PDP.
“The grand standing by those seeking patronage from the ruling All Progressives Congress does not bother us. We stand by our choice without regrets. Let it be known to all that Ndigbo should not be taken for granted,” the group said.
The organisation dismissed claims by some APC senators that Ekweremadu was not properly elected, saying: “If he was not properly elected, why should the election of Senator Bukola Saraki conducted at the same time, same day, same venue and by the same people be upheld as flawless?”
“Moreover the executive has no lien on the legislators because they are independent and at liberty to elect anybody they like to lead them, which they have done.
“The party (APC) has no business with the election of presiding officers of the National Assembly and they should avoid overheating the polity.
“They should also know that President Muhammadu Buhari belongs to all Nigerians and not the APC alone. Therefore, the party has no right to say that they have the sole right to dictate what should happen at the National Assembly or in the country.”
"The APC-led federal government should concentrate on implementing its agenda in order to move the nation forward, stressing that it was not in its interest to kick-start the government with a crisis.
In a statement released in Abuja by the media office of the governors of the opposition party and signed by Patrick Okon, the PDP Governors’ Forum frowned on what it described as the obvious prodding of the police by the presidency and the ruling APC “as a result of their desperation to remove the Deputy Senate President who was elected by his peers”.
The statement also declared support for the re-election bid of Governors Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa and Idris Wada of Kogi State in the forthcoming governorship elections in both states, stating that the electorate would show its confidence in their performance by re-electing them convincingly.
The PDP governors also called on the newly appointed acting Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Mrs. Amina Bala Zakari, to recuse herself from the role of acting chairman because of the obvious conflict of interest as a result of her long standing relationship with President Muhammadu Buhari in her private capacity and officially.
“The honourable thing for Mrs. Zakari to do is to recuse herself of this role, as nobody who knows the level of her relationship with the president can believe she will be impartial in her conduct of any matter that the president has vested interest in.
“In this case, the success of APC over the PDP in any election especially with the governorship elections coming up in Bayelsa and Kogi States,” the statement said.
The governors called on Nigerians to hold the APC accountable for all the broken promises, claiming that the ruling party had shown itself incapable of delivering on the change it promised during the campaigns.

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