The Speaker of Edo State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Frank Abumere Okiye and six other members of the Edo Assembly, on Tuesday formally defected from the opposition All Progressive Congress (APC) to the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP), on the floor of the house.
Okiye who announced the defection at plenary session added that he had received letters from the six members including himself, expressing their desires to decamp to the ruling party in the state so as to identify with the developmental strides of Governor Godwin Obaseki to move Edo State forward.
The speaker relied on what he termed the sharp divisions and factions in the All Progressive Congress Party (APC) in the state as one of the reasons they decided to cross to PDP, to enable them to perform their duties effectively as representative of their constituencies.
Those who formally decamped are Rt. Hon Frank Okiye, Hon. Asoro Osadebamwen Roland, Hon. Aluebhosele Ephraim; Hon. Ojiezele Osezua Sunday; Hon. Okhuarobor Henry, Hon. Okoduwa Emma and Hon. Marcus Onobun.
It would be recalled that all the 24-member house were elected on the platform of the APC.
However, crisis ensued when only nine members presented themselves for inauguration on June 17, 2019, when Governor Obaseki issued the proclamation for the house to convey.
The crisis snowballed into Obaseki himself defecting to the PDP while the remaining 14 members-elect on August 6, 2020, caused a retired Deputy Clerk of the house to inaugurate them at a private residence in Ugbor are of the Benin GRA.
Okiye and the defecting six members remained in the APC all through the electioneering campaigns and the election proper in September, 19 this year.
Meanwhile, the Assembly has adopted the Business Calendar for the Second Quarter, Second Session of the 7th Assembly 2020.
Presenting the report to the House the Majority Leader, Hon. Okhuarobor Henry said that the calendar would see the House sitting for 62 days in the second quarter; three (3) days in September; 21 days in October; 21 days in November and 17 days in December.
In the same vein, the speaker Rt. Hon Frank Okiye announced the receipt of “A Bill for a Law to Established a College of Education and other connected purposes” from the Executives Governor of the state Mr Godwin Obaseki.
Rounding off the session, Okiye congratulated the Governor Obaseki and his Deputy, Rt. Hon Phillip Shaibu, on their victory at the just concluded governorship election.
The speaker added that the governor’s victory was a victory for the Edo people, whom he noted, spoke with one voice at the poll and urged them to be magnanimous in victory.
The House thereafter adjourned to October 12, 2020, at 10 am.