Olusegun Samuel in Yenagoa
The All Progressive Congress (APC) has threatened to drag the Speaker of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly, Hon Abraham Ngobere, the sacked lawmaker representing Brass Constituency 1, Hon Daniels Charles to court for contempt.
Also, in trouble for contempt is the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Bayelsa State House of Assembly following the sack of Charles by the Court of Appeal.
Rt Hon Abraham Ngobere, and Hon Charles risk jail term for not abiding by the order of the Court which sacked the latter with immediate effect.
The Court of Appeal sitting in Port Harcourt had on July 14 in a unanimous decision by Justices Joseph Shagbaor Ikeyegh, Gabriel Omoniyi Kolawole and Olabode Adegbehingbe in suit CA/PH/79/2022 ruled that there was merit in the appeal filed by the APC which sought the sacking of Charles as a member of the House for defecting to the PDP from APC on whose platform he emerged the House of Assembly member.
The Court which hinged its decision on Section 109(1) (g) and (2) of the Constitution ordered the Speaker of the House under constitutional duties to declare his seat vacant and directed Charles to return all monies and allowances he has collected since 14/04/2021.
Counsel to APC, Mr. Tuduru Ede, who expressed dismay that Charles is still being allowed to participate in the deliberation of the House said INEC, the Bayelsa State House of Assembly, Ngobere and Charles are all in contempt of the Court’s ruling.
Ede, who insisted that the Court of Appeal made a declaratory judgment said the implication of allowing Charles to remain in the House is that all motions and decisions made by the House of Assembly are null and void.
“The Speaker of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly, INEC, and the House of Assembly as an institution and Hon Dr Charles Daniels are in contempt of Court by their actions for allowing Hon Charles to be part of the House.
“The Court of Appeal has sacked him and INEC should have conducted an election into the vacant seat. Hon Charles is no longer a member of the House and he should have returned all the monies he collected since April 2021.
“He risks going to jail for showing contempt to the order of the Court. This is part of the impunity we are talking about. The implication of what the House of Assembly has done is that by allowing Dr Daniels, who has been sacked in the eyes of the law since April 20 21 to be part of its deliberation means all their actions, motions are null and void. By allowing him to be part of any deliberation means all what they are doing is nullity.”
When contacted Hon Charles said he would need to talk to his lawyer before offering a response.