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Rivers: Reps probe member over solidarity visit to Fubara

The House of Representatives on Thursday mandated its Committee on Ethics and Privileges to investigate a member, Ikenga Ugochinyere (PDP, Imo), over an alleged misrepresentation…

The House of Representatives on Thursday mandated its Committee on Ethics and Privileges to investigate a member, Ikenga Ugochinyere (PDP, Imo), over an alleged misrepresentation of the House during a recent courtesy visit to the governor of Rivers State, Sir Siminalayi Fubara. 

This followed a Point of Privilege raised by Rep. Yusuf Adamu Gagdi (APC, Plateau), pursuant to Order 6, Rules 1, 2, and 3 of the House. 

While raising the point of privilege, Gagdi said a recent report attributed to Ugochinyere noted that a delegation of the House cutting across party lines paid a solidarity visit to Governor Fubara. 

Gagdi said his finding was that members of the House Committee on Local Contents were on an oversight assignment to Rivers State and decided to pay a courtesy call on the governor. He added that a report emanating from the visit indicated that a delegation of 50 members of the House paid the governor a solidarity visit, which he said amounted to misrepresentation. 

He said that as a member of the House, he felt his privilege had been breached and therefore requested that Rep. Ugochinyere be invited to explain whether the House sent a delegation on a solidarity visit, as reported in some national dailies. 

Another member of the House, Mark Essiet, who tried to raise a point of order to explain what transpired, was, however, ruled out of order as the Deputy Speaker, Benjamin Okezie Kalu, who presided, said that by the House Rule, a point of privilege is not subject to debate. 

He said that since the name of the House had been dragged, there was a need to investigate the matter. 

He referred the matter to the House Committee on Ethics and Privileges to investigate.

Daily Trust recalled that Ugochinyere, while addressing journalists on the sidelines of a Thanksgiving service held to commemorate the one-year anniversary of Governor Fubara in Port Harcourt, had claimed that a delegation of federal lawmakers numbering 50 were in Rivers to show solidarity for the governor and celebrate with him on his one year of transformational leadership. 

The lawmakers, he said, consisted of members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Labour Party (LP), New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), and the All Progressives Congress (APC). 

He said the presence of the lawmakers across party lines was evidence of Fubara’s transformational infrastructure revolution, which he said had gotten “serious national attention.” 

“Governor Fubara has recorded great achievements in the areas of good governance, restoration and maintenance of peace and unity, and provision of massive infrastructural projects for economic prosperity in Rivers State one year after his assumption of office,” Ugochinyere said, according to reports by some of the national dailies. 

Daily Trust reports that Ugochinyere, who is the spokesperson of a coalition of opposition lawmakers in the House, has been a strong advocate of Governor Fubara in the aftermath of the faceoff between him and the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Nyesom Wike, his estranged political godfather.


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