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Edo Assembly: Group Petitions Buhari, CJN Tanko, AGF Malami, NBA

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A pro-democracy group, the Strategic Advocacy Outreach (SAO), has petitioned President Muhammadu Buhari, Chief Justice Muhammad Tanko, Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Malami Abubakar and the President of the Nigerian Bar Association, Olumide Akpata over the lingering Edo House of Assembly crisis.

Naija News reports that the group stated that the Assembly crisis has left 14 elected members on the sidelines, unable to offer representation to their constituencies owing to a protracted legal hearing complicated by political disagreements.

The group’s Convener, Mr. John Mayaki who dispatched the petitions earlier in the day said the situation amounted to a “detention of democracy in Edo State”.

He urged the petitioned government leaders to take urgent actions to resolve the crisis with a view to ensuring the inauguration of the sidelined members before the expiration of their term.

Citing the danger this incident poses to Nigeria’s democracy and constitutional supremacy, Mayaki, who was a spokesperson to Osagie Ize-Iyamu, a governorship candidate, explained that the continued exclusion of the elected members violates the protected rights of citizens to choose their representatives in government and for their voices to be heard before actions are taken on important matters of state.

The group’s Convener lamented that “for over two years now, millions of constituencies have essentially been shut out of governance and their choices at the polls dismissed over what it described as a bid by political actors to restrict participation only to those with the same partisan leanings”.

According to the group, the legislative arm of government represents the pillar of democracy given its checks and balance role and constitutional mandate to ensure that policies enjoy the backing of the majority before they become law.

Ruing the state of affairs in Edo State, the group said elected members owe allegiance only to their constituencies.

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