Adibe Emenyonu in Benin City
The leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Oredo Local Government Area of Edo State has suspended the Edo State House of Assembly (EDHA) member-elect, Hon. Christopher Ewere Okaeben.
Hon. Christopher Ewere Okaeben is among the 12 members-elect, who are yet to be inaugurated.
Reacting, the suspended member elect said those who suspended him lack the powers to do so, adding that he was not bothered.
The suspension of Okaeben which was announced on yesterday at an enlarged meeting of APC members in Oredo Local Government Area of the state, was recommended by a five-man panel set up on July 1, to investigate Okaeben’s misconduct.
According to the Chairman of APC in Oredo LGA, Godwin Alabi, who read the report of the findings to members of the party, “the party followed the provisions of Article 21 of its constitution which stipulates disciplinary actions for erring members.”
Alabi explained that the suspension of Okaeben was as a result of his failure to honour several invitations extended to him to ascertain his grievances against the party.
“Following his utterances, the APC in the council area asked him to apologise but he refused to comply with the party’s directive, rather he threatened the life of the chairman of the party in the council area, Godwin Alabi.”
Alabi thanked the committee members for their objectivity while carrying out their job.
He added that the party has complied with the recommendation of the panel which includes the suspension of Chris Okaeben, who was elected to represent Oredo West Constituency in the state assembly.
The Chairman of Oredo Local Government Area, Hon. Jenkins Osunde, said “the party had taken a decision on Chris Okaeben” and urged that the party’s attention should now be focused on supporting Governor Godwin Obaseki to deliver the dividends of democracy to Edo people.
A member of the party in Oredo Ward 7, Mr. Tony Alile, who moved the suspension motion, said Okaeben violated the party’s rules and was subsequently suspended for his action.
“If he retraces his steps and apologises, the party will treat his apology and take a decision,” he added.
Martins Osakue of Oredo Ward 2, said the suspension was in order, as there was need to put members in check from time to time, assuring that Okaeben could be forgiven if he apologises.
But reacting to the suspension , Okaeben said he was not bothered because those that suspended lacked the powers to do so, describing the action as an act of irresponsibility
He said, “Who are those suspending me? What powers do they have to suspend me?
“Why did it take them a long time to suspend me after the expiration of their 48 hours ultimatum?