The struggle by factions of the Anambra State House of Assembly to take possession of the seat of the Speaker caused a fight and trade of words in the hallowed chambers on Thursday.
Both factions of the House, led by their separate Speakers, had arrived the State Assembly complex at about 10am in the morning, but could not sit for plenary because of the tussle over which of the two Speakers should preside over the meeting.
About 22 out of the 30 members of the House had three weeks ago claimed to have impeached Speaker, Rita Maduagwu, replacing her with Hon. Ikem Uzoezie. But Maduagwu had quickly denied being impeached, while the Uzoezie’s faction insisted she remained impeached.
This had led to the sealing of the House by police authorities to forestall any breach of peace.
But at about 10:30pm on Wednesday, police unsealed the complex ahead of Thursday sitting, but, both factions went inside to administer the House.
Maduagwu had first entered the hallowed chambers and sat on the Speaker’s seat, but later left when she found that only two of her supporters were present.
As about 2:30pm when she returned to preside over the House, Uzoezie had already taken the Speaker’s seat, refusing to give way for Maduagwu, causing a huge uproar in the House.
Two members, Hon Obinna Emenaka, and a pro-Maduagwu lawmaker who recently suffered a vehicle accident, however, engaged a pro-Uzoezie lawmaker, Romanus Obi, in a fight but members rallied round to stop the fight.
Emenaka, who now uses crutches, deployed them in the fight, but was quickly dispossessed of them by another Pro-Uzoezie lawmaker, Onyebuchi Offor.
“You are not ashamed of yourself, you were schemed out of the party’s primary election in your area and you could not do anything,” Emenaka yelled at Obi.
Obi was, however, urged by members of his faction to keep calm and not to reply.
The Daily Times gathered that the bone of contention in the Assembly was the refusal of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) to give tickets to most members of the House.
It was gathered that all the pro-Uzoezie members of the House are those denied ticket by APGA to either return to the House or move over to the House of Representatives.
As at the time of filling this report, all the lawmakers refused to leave the chambers, with Uzoezie sitting tight on the Speaker’s seat, while the refusal of the clerk to make available the mace was still stalling Uzoezie’s attempt to preside over the House.