Seats of three state lawmakers elected on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party have been declared vacant by Ebonyi state house of assembly.
Speaker of the House, Francis Nwifuru made the announcement on Tuesday March 15, and also read their purported letters of resignation during an emergency sitting of the House.
The affected lawmakers identified as Ali Okechukwu (Ishielu North); Franca Okpo (Abakaliki North); and Victor Aleke (Ebonyi West), were not present alongside five other PDP lawmakers during the plenary. 15 House members of the All Progressive Party attended the sitting.
After reading the alleged letters of resignation on the floor of the House, declared the seats of the three lawmakers vacant.
The Clerk was then directed to write to the Independent National Electoral Commission to notify it of the development and the need to conduct fresh elections in the affected constituencies.
The three affected lawmakers have however countered this, insisting they are still members of the state House of Assembly.
Aleke who commented on the development, described the action of the Speaker and the APC lawmakers as illegal. He also stated that the Speaker and the other APC lawmakers who have been sacked by the Federal High Court in Abuja, are no longer lawmakers and should not have sat in the first place.
“What they have done today by purporting to sit and declaring our seats vacant amounts to contempt of court and the court may declare them wanted if care is not taken.
“We have no reason whatsoever to resign our seats. We are still lawmakers representing our various constituencies and we enjoin our supporters and the general public to disregard what they have done.”