Val Okara, Owerri
The crisis brewing at the Imo state House of Assembly has deepened as the Deputy Speaker, Chief Ugonna Ozurigbo on Thursday resigned from his position.
The deputy speaker’s resignation is coming barely 24 hours after 21 state lawmakers served an impeachment notice on the Speaker, Acho Ihim and the Majority Leader, Lugard Osuji. The duo of the Speaker and the Majority leader were suspended after the plenary session on Wednesday.
The member representing Onuimo state constituency, Chinedu Offor was elected as the acting speaker while his counterpart, Lloyd Chukwuemeka from Owerri North became the new majority leader
The Speaker pro tempore, Oxford accused the two suspended principal officers had of engaging in unparliamentary conduct by escaping with the mace during plenary.
The resignation letter of the deputy speaker was dated May 15, but was received by the office of the clerk of the state House of Assembly on May 16 and personally sighed by Ozurigbo.
In an eight- paragraph letter of resignation, the former deputy speaker stated that he was resigning to enable him function well as a member -elect of the House of Representatives.
It would be recalled that Ozurigbo was declared the member -elect for Nwangele/Nkwerre/Isu/Njaba Federal Constituency by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The resignation letter partly reads: “As you already know, I have been sent to another four -year mission by my federal constituency, nay Imo state at the House of Representatives, Abuja.
“This new task has come with its own challenges and expectations, especially the need to play key roles in the formation of the National Assembly leadership and time to strategically position, to pursue the greater interests of Imo state, South East and Nigeria at the federal legislature. Currently, these will make my availability in Imo state irregular.
“Hence, I seek your undertaking as I either save the office of Imo state deputy speaker by resigning or allow my new engagements to suffer the office of Imo state deputy speaker by holding same tenaciously.
“Thus, for your efficiency and the good of Imo people, I hereby resign as the deputy speaker of Imo state House of Assembly, effective from the date written above.”
Meanwhile, there was heavy presence of security personnel at the premises of state House of Assembly possibly to prevent breakdown of law and order.