The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has asserted that the fate of the 14 members-elect of the state’s House of Assembly, whose seats were declared vacant, rests with the Court.
The seats of the 14 members-elect were in December 2019 declared vacant by the House led by former speaker, Rt. Hon. Francis Okiye, for being absent from the House proceedings for the mandatory 181 days.
The governor, reacting to calls to pardon the erring Assembly members-elect during an interactive session with stakeholders from Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Trade Union Congress (TUC) and other civil society groups, called for the support of all stakeholders towards achieving lasting peace and development in Edo.
According to him, “Some characters said they sent congratulatory letters to me and put it in all kinds of conditions.
“How can you tell me to forgive those 14 lawmakers-elect who are responsible for sedition and treason in Nigeria? Of course, we are going to start charges.”
Obaseki continued: “You see, what is bad is bad. Let’s stop covering up things so that people can learn and not do it again. We have gotten support from all of you and are very glad and happy; your support gives us the confidence to continue to fight.
“For us as a government, we are open. There is nothing that we are hiding and this is why we have to kill anything that links us to godfatherism. We have killed it at the national level and need to kill it locally as it is everywhere. I urge you to please be activists for good, peace and development.”
“This engagement is to see how we can collaborate and make things work differently; this is a time that we need leadership more than ever before,” he noted.
On his part, the Chairman of NLC in Edo State, Mr. Sunday Osanyande, urged the government to digitize revenue collection by migrating to e-revenue collection systems, which will check leakages.
Osanyande said that the e-revenue collection system would further increase the state government Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).