National Assembly blockade: NBA berates Nigeria police, lawmakers

Hon Cheche, from Niger State, climbing over NASS gate to enter the premises after the police mounted a blockade targeted at the Speaker.

The Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, has described as a show of shame last week’s actions of the police preventing some lawmakers from accessing the National Assembly. It also condemned the lawmakers who climbed over the fence of the Assembly to gain access to the chambers, saying “our elected Representatives should always conduct themselves maturely and responsibly.
 
The lawyers’ association, in a statement by its president, Augustine Alegeh, said the selective manner some persons were allowed into the complex while others were shut out raised doubts on the police’ claim that it acted on a security report to act the way it did.
 
“The implementation of the security report also lacked transparency and good faith. The entire process being lacking in credibility is strongly condemned,” he said.

The association advised that as the 2015 general election approaches, politicians “must not engage in any conduct culpable of truncating our nascent democracy.”

It added that “political differences may exist but must be resolved in civility and in accordance to the law. Our collective interest as Nigerians must not be sacrificed for personal need”. 

Also commenting on the current political crisis rocking the Ekiti State House of Assembly, the association described the removal of the Speaker, Adewale Omirin, by seven Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, lawmakers as “illegal and unlawful”. 

The seven lawmakers said they had impeached Mr.  Omirin, and his deputy, Adetunji Orisalade, and replaced them with Dele Olugbemi and Abeni Olayinka.  Their actions were opposed and rejected by the 19 other members of the Assembly who are members of the All Progressives Congress, APC.

The NBA said the approval of the interim local government chairmen, special advisers to the governor and commissioners by the seven lawmakers was an act of impunity and unlawfulness.  It asked the seven lawmakers involved in “these unconstitutional act” to have due respect and regards for the Nigerian constitution and conduct themselves in more responsible manner as elected representatives. 

The association also urged security operatives to ensure that law and order prevail in Ekiti at all times.


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