Former acting governor of the state, Chief Nestor Binabo
By Segun James
The political drama in Bayelsa State continued Monday, as the former acting governor of the state, Chief Nestor Binabo, Monday resigned as the Speaker of the state House of Assembly.
Binabo handed over as acting governor to Governor Seriake Dickson, barely a week ago.
The former Speaker on tendering his resignation, gave the reason that he and the governor were from the same senatorial district and the same Sagbama constituency. He added that he was not supposed to hold the speakership position in the spirit of political balancing.
Following the scenario, Hon. Kombowei Benson, representing Southern Ijaw Constituency 4 was elected as the new Speaker.
However, a mild drama played out when the new Speaker was mistakenly sworn-in by the speaker pro-tempo, Hon. Tonye Isanah, representing Kolokuma/ Opokuma constituency 1, who was nominated to hold brief for the assembly for 10 minutes, instead of the Clerk of the Assembly who was supposed to swear in the new speaker.
However, Isanah himself acknowledged his mistake and openly apologised to the assembly by saying: “There has been an error because the speaker is supposed to be sworn-in by the Clerk of the House not myself, we may have to do it the proper way.”
In his acceptance speech, Kombowei said he accepted the duty and has offered himself for service, saying the election was done in the spirit of oneness, and promised to carry all members along in his administration.
He also thanked Dickson for not interfering with the election of the speaker, while urging the House to corporate with him to move the assembly ahead.
The election of a new deputy speaker was stood down but the assembly adjoined till tomorrow to get enough time to thrash out the issue before mentioning it on the floor of the Assembly.
The new speaker, Hon. Benson Friday Kombowei, representing Southern Ijaw IV, was the sole contestant for election into the position of speaker after he was nominated and seconded by Hon. Ayobegha James, and Hon. Alfred Egba.
The 50-year old Kombowei was sworn in immediately after he accepted his nomination saying “I sincerely accept the nomination and offer myself for service of Bayelsa State House of Assembly.”
His emergence ended days of speculation over who would be the new speaker with the acting speaker, Fini Angaye and Kurokegha Dorgu also in the race. Kombowei who is serving his second term as a member of the assembly.