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IMO: 22 lawmakers sign to Impeach Speaker


By Damian Duruiheoma, Owerri

Twenty two out of the 27 members of the Imo Assembly have signed to commence impeachment process against Speaker, Dr. Chiji Collins.

The proceedings, The Nation learnt, would commence immediately the House reconvenes after the Assembly complex was shut last two weeks over coronavirus scare.

It was gathered the 22 members have already asked the Speaker to resign honourably or face impeachment any moment.

They are also accusing him of greed and functioning as chairman of every committee of the House.

They lamented everything about the House has been starting and ending with the Speaker.

Member representing Oguta constituency, Frank Ugboma, said: “The people we represent, now see us as Alleluia boys of the executive arm just because our Speaker kowtows to the bidding of the executive even on critical issues of governance.

“This is so much so that he is now cowed to carry out oversight over executive misdeeds.

“Though, as a House we collectively take responsibility for failure to stand for our people, many of whom are civil servants and pensioners who are owed salaries and pensions up to four months arrears.

“I need not bore you with the recent road demonstration by our aged senior citizens, in protest of their unpaid pensions.

“At various times, I have been inundated with calls and messages from many of such owed government employees and retirees from my constituency. Many times have I assured them, to no avail.

“Come to think of it, should I break the spirit of those my constituents (who come to seek help) with the news that I am also owed salaries, even as member of the House of Assembly?

“Would they even believe such incredible story? How would they even believe, when the front page of “Saturday Statesman” Newspaper has it boldly captioned that “NO MEMBER IS OWED” ascribing their source as Imo House of Assembly headed by Hon. Chiji Collins, Ph.d as Speaker.

“With such headlines in the papers and tabloid, I would be considered a liar by my aides whom I told that I have not received my salaries because I pay them each time I am paid.

“What of my numerous constituents, allies and friends, who daily call me for financial aid but we’re told to be patient, until I am paid salaries. They would think I am lying and dribbling them with the story of non payment of salaries”.

On allegations by the Speaker that former Governor, Emeka Ihedioha was sponsoring his impeachment to get at Governor Hope Uzodimma, Ugboma described it as obviously empanelled lies by those who desperately seek the Governor’s attention.

“I mean, it is a well calculated crap to sacrifice the image and the good relationship existing between the 9th House and the Executive Governor of Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodinma by hangers-on and blackmailers.

“They are those who feel and continue to sacrifice colleagues and the 9th House for a porrage of yam.

“It is evident that someone somewhere is sinking very fast and now on a face saving episonage and feels that causing disharmony between the 9th House and Senator Hope Uzodinma would rescue him from self destruction.”

When contacted, Media Assistant to the Speaker, Emeka Ahaneku, described the move as voice of the opposition whose interest was to get at Governor Uzodimma.

He said however that those championing the move did not have the capacity to impeach the Speaker because few people who had joined them had made a turnaround for fear of being suspended by the House on resumption.


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