By Emeka Samuel
The Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly complex was on Wednesday sealed
by security operatives to avert breakdown of law and order over
political crisis in the Assembly.
The political crisis followed the ousting of five members of the House
who recently defected from the PDP to the APC and the subsequent
election of a factional Speaker Mr Nse Ntuen by the APC faction .
Newsmen who visited the vicinity of the Assembly complex observed that
more than 300 security personnel and at least 30 security vehicles
positioned at strategic entry and exit points to the assembly complex.
The combined security team of the Directorate of State Security
(DSS),the Police, and Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps barred
lawmakers, Assembly staff and visitors from entering the complex and
were seen patrolling the area.
The House under the leadership of Mr. Onofiok Luke had on Monday
adjourned sitting to November 27, 2018 while the factional Speaker, Mr
Nse Ntuen adjourned their sitting to November 21 for the election of
other House officers.
The Press Secretary to the Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Mr
Kufre Okon said they were surprised when they arrived the Assembly
for the routine work Wednesday after the Tuesday’s Public Holiday to
see the entrance gate of the Assembly locked.
“We saw the place lucked. There was nobody to talk to us. The gate was
completely barricaded by officers and men of the Nigerian Police Force
who were well-armed and also turning away lawmakers and their aides
they were embarrassing people.
“They didn’t allow anybody to get access to the Assembly complex to
carry out their legislative duty. Nobody communicated the action of
the security personnel to us.
“We don’t know how long they will be there. Members are not happy over
the sealing of the place. They believe that it is an attempt to
undermine democracy in the state and it will not work. Any attempt to
attack the house of assembly will be defeated.”Okon said.
Ntuen had earlier told newsmen that they planned to sit but could
cancel the sitting if the police and other security operatives would
not allow them to do so.
Police Public Relations Officer Mr Macdon Ogbeche did not pick his
call when Nigeria Pilot called to ascertain the reason behind the
sealing of the complex.