Crisis rocking the All Progressives Congress appeared to have deepened following insistence by 19 lawmakers-elect that they would not be intimidated by Governor Godwin Obaseki to pick leadership of his choice.
The 19 lawmakers-elect are said to be Oshiomhole’s boys in the Edo State House of Assembly.
Leadership of the Edo APC had last weekend zoned the Assembly positions to different senatorial districts but such actions appeared not to have gone down well with the 19 lawmakers-elect.
The 19 lawmakers-elect who spoke at a press briefing on Monday in Bénin City accused Governor Obaseki of attempting to truncate democracy by refusing to send a proclamation letter.
Barr. Washinton Osifo who read a prepared speech said Governor Obaseki is usurping the powers of the legislature by refusing to allow the Assembly to function.
Osifo noted that the Governor, no matter how powerful, could not impose individuals either as Speaker or Deputy Speaker on the legislature.
He said the Governor could only lobby for his preferred candidate as witnessed at the National Assembly.
His words, “We urged all well-meaning individuals including Oba Ewuare II, President Mohammadu Buhari to prevail on Governor Obaseki to immediately issue the letter of proclamation to enable the Edo State Hous of Assembly function and avoid serious constitutional crisis.
“We are ready to defend our democracy and the sanctity of the legislature.”
Governor Obaseki who spoke through his Commissioner for Communication and Orientation, Hon Paul Ohonbamu, assured that the proclamation letter would soon be sent.
Ohonbamu said the intervention of the party in the assembly leadership was to prevent the rancour that characterized the 6th Assembly.
He said intermittent change of leadership in the last Assembly affected development in the state.
He said, “They are product of the party and the party interested in what they are doing. The party only helped them do what is needful.
“The Governor invited them and told them the intervention is for legislative harmony. Nobody wants to impose leadership on them. The delay is not a threat to democracy.”