Senate wades into Akwa Ibom House of Assembly crisis

0
Senate President Bukola Saraki.

The Senate on Wednesday directed the Committee on Police to look into the crisis rocking the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly and report back to the plenary within 48 hours.

President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki, during Plenary, stated that the upper legislative chamber would continue to defend democracy everywhere.

Saraki said this, while commenting on the invasion of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly following a Point of Order raised by Senator Bassey Akpan, the Senator representing Akwa Ibom North-East.

Citing Order 43, Senator Akpan updated the Upper Legislative Chamber, about Tuesday’s siege on the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly by the Nigerian Police.

“Just yesterday at 6am, 100 policemen led five suspended members of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly into the Assembly Chambers,” the Senator said.

Responding, Saraki, said: “When we hear of an invasion, we must defend our democracy irrespective of which state. When we hear of an invasion on the Akwa Ibom parliament or anywhere there is an invasion on parliament, irrespective of where in this country, we must stand and say what is right.

However, at the end of the day, we must still refer the matter to the Chairman of the Police Committee to do the work that has to be done,” Saraki said.

The President of the Senate, then directed the Committee on Police to look into the issue and report back the plenary within 48 hours.

“Within the next 48 hours, we should look into this matter and invite the police and then get a report to find out exactly what has happened. However, this parliament must stand for the fact that we must protect the Legislative arm of government with no interference.

“However, we will not conclude until we get a report to establish that any issue which suggests that a minority of members are being supported by security agencies — there is no way that we should be seen to stand for that. So the Committee’s Report will guide us to confirm exactly what happened in Akwa Ibom,” Saraki said.