By Emeka Mamah
OWERRI—IMO State House of Assembly has failed to get a quorum of legislators loyal to Governor Rocha Okorocha to begin impeachement procedures against the Deputy Governor, Prince Eze Madumere.
Following its failure to get more members for the impeachment, the leadership may suspend more members, Vanguard gathered.
Madumere had been engrossed in a dispute with his principal, Governor Rochas Okorocha over the former’s failure to endorse Mr Uche Nwosu, Okorocha’s son in-law as the next governor of the state.
The disagreement between the two, who had been political associates for over two decades boiled over to the last ward, local government and state congresses of the party, when a coalition of formidable leaders of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, in the state defeated Okorocha’s candidates in the controversial congresses of the party in the state last month.
However, Okorocha is said to have directed that impeachment proceedings should be initiated against his deputy who is also said to be nursing an ambition to succeed his boss in 2019.
Sources told Vanguard that the alleged inability to get a quorum of loyal legislators was responsible for the delay in proceeding with the process.
Last week, the leadership of the House, suspended four of its members under controversial circumstances but the thinking is that more members would be suspended, to make it easy for the remaining members to initiate the impeachment proceedings against Madumere but some of the victims were already heading to court.
The Speaker of the House of Assembly, Hon. Acho Ihim, was said to have met with some of the arrowheads of the impeachment threat in a bid to fish out some legislators who could be suspended on alleged trumped up charges to enable to remaining members kick-start the process.
According to one of the lawmakers who spoke on the condition of anonymity, “the failure of Governor Okorocha’s backed- committee led by Hon. Luggard Osuji to raise impeachable offences against Madumere had also put lawmakers into a quandary as most of them were doubting the willingness of the state Chief Judge to set up a probe panel against the Deputy Governor, if alleged impeachable offences were not raised.. ”
Members of the state House of Assembly are said to be polarised alongside Okorocha and coalition camps with few others sitting on the fence who are alleged to be using Prince Madumere’s impeachment plot as a bargaining chip, even as some of them were seeking admission into the coalition’s camp to enable them actualise their second term bid as bargaining chip.
Those who confirmed the story included one of the four suspended legislators, Hon Ifeanyi Nnataraonye, an APC chieftain, Engineer Okey Njoku from Ikeduru Local Government and Chief Ambrose Onyegbulem, also a chieftain of the party.