Obaseki forecloses return of 14 lawmakers yet to be inaugurated

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Basking in the euphoria of his victory at the polls last month, Govenor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State has ruled out the possibility of bringing back 14 state House of Assembly lawmakers yet to be inaugurated.

He said their seats remained vacant as he lacked powers to return then to the legislative house.

Obaseki who reportedly spoke when he paid a thank-you visit to the National Working Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party in Abuja on Monday made it clear that he was not ready to violate the laws in order to please the 14 lawmakers.

“They on their own refused to be inaugurated. They were listening to their godfather who kept hoping and promising that he would unconstitutionally get the state House of Assembly to reissue a proclamation even after the court had settled the matter.
“For more than 180 days they did not come. They refused to represent the people. Those seats became vacant; that’s what the constitution says.
“They went to court after the seats were declared vacant by the Speaker. There is nothing I can do to that at this time.

“I wish it did not happen but people were playing God and promising what is not constitutionally possible.
“It is not about me. I am an elected governor of Edo. I am not one that planted people into the house of Assembly.
“They, on their own, operated the rules the way it should be, the seats are now vacant.

“We should learn that democracy is underpinned by the constitution and the law.
“Even if I wanted today to bring them back, I don’t have such powers.

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“I do not have anything against them because I do not have such authority to bring them back to the house.”

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