By Chris Njoku, Owerri
…accuses him of incompetence, financial recklessness
New speaker emerges
The Speaker of Imo State House of Assembly, Chiji Collins, was impeached in an emergency sitting on Friday.
Members alleged that the former speaker was removed because of financial recklessness and his inability to handle the House well.
The impeachment, which took place at the House of Assembly complex in Owerri, was carried out under tight security.
Collins was impeached in the afternoon after a member from Osu State constituency, Ekene Nnodimele, moved a motion for his removal.
Nineteen of the 27 members of the assembly, who were present at a brief sitting of the lawmakers, signed Collins’s impeachment letter.
The former speaker was immediately replaced by Hon. Paul Meziem representing Onuimo State constituency as the new speaker.
The brief plenary was presided over by the deputy speaker, Amara Chyna Iwuanyanwu.
Presenting the new speaker to the state governor, Hope Uzodimma, at the Exco Chamber. Government House,Owerri, Iwuanyanwu explained that the impeachment was borne out the necessity to save the APC from collapsing, adding that the former speaker was removed for lack of legislative experience.
Receiving the new speaker, Governor Uzodimma noted that the removal of the former speaker was a normal legislative process.
He said: “We must begin to encourage our legislature. It is a normal thing. Every house will continue to search for quality and competent leadership that will help grow democracy.
“I will encourage all to embed the spirit of sportsmanship and service to colleagues. It does not worth taking one’s life. When your colleagues have expressed their discontent, it is either you flow with them and do what they want or you give way.”
Also, the mover of the motion, Nnodimele, while speaking to newsmen, said that the step taken to remove the former speaker was a collective decision.
“The impeachment notice was signed by 19 members representing more than two thirds which went through due process of legislative process,” he said.
He alleged that the former speaker was removed as a result of obvious incompetence, financial recklessness embezzlement and sabotage,” adding that the new speaker would unite the House.
The new speaker was apparently overwhelmed with joy as he could only manage to sing songs of praise.
Source: The Nation