A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and former member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Igo Aguma, has accused the Minister of Transportation of manipulating the party in Rivers State to achieve selfish ends.
Aguma who made the accusation during a stakeholders’ meeting organised by the Port Harcourt City Local Government Area (PHALGA) chapter of the party over the weekend, insisted that only direct mode of congresses would be accepted by him and his supporters just as he accused the leader of the party in the State, Rotimi Amaechi of undermining the interest of stakeholders of the party.
He said he would continue to resist any form of oppression, noting that the crisis rocking the State chapter of the party will be over if the right things are done, and that the party must be rescued from the hands of the former governor of the state.
Aguma, who was a two-time member of the House of Representatives called on the national leadership of the party to take a special look at the APC in Rivers State, maintaining that it was currently an abandoned ship.
According to Aguma, “We are calling on the National Executive Council of the party to take a special look into Rivers State. We were, up until now, like an abandoned ship. We’ve decided to start doing things by ourselves and to call the attention of the NEC to our plight in Rivers State.
“Just one man cannot manipulate the party for his personal benefit. Ask yourself why we did not do direct primaries. Everybody knows it is the solution for every party that has a series of court cases. That was offered to us as party, but our leader rejected it.
“Direct primary that we know will produce the most popular candidates. And of course direct primaries will definitely produce a candidate of his (Amaechi’s) choice because he has people like us aligning with him but he refused.
“He is appropriating the party for his own selfish gain. He is a minister today in spite of the fact that we failed woefully in Ikwerre LGA. It was zero vote. Even though he brought in (Biokpomabo) Awara, he brought zero to the table.
“Already, the party (state APC) is collapsing on his head. The entire world now knows what he is doing. He says he is the leader, but the party has collapsed.”
Bayelsa Assembly Committee on Environment To Curb Unlawful Sand Dredging Activities.
With various complaints and pettitions by communities impacted by the activities of illegal sand dredging and mining in the Bayelsa State, the state House of Assembly has organised a public hearing on a bill to regulate the operations of sand dredging to ensure that the environment is not adversely impacted on.
The bill tagged ” Regulation of Sand Dealing and Dredging Operations Bill 2019″ according to the House Committee on Environment is aimed at gathering inputs from experts, technocrats and the public in order to formulate a people-friendly bill that will serve the best interest of Bayelsans.
The House Committee Chairman on Environment and member representing Nembe Constituency one, Hon. Ebi Ben Ololo noted that the public hearing became necessary on the need to remediate the environment and tackle the challenges posed by sand dredging operations in the state.
” The importance of this bill cannot be overemphasized because it can save lives. You are aware a number of times so many communities and their representatives have sent pettitions to this House, specifically the Chairman House Committee on Environment as per the environmental degradation that has taken place as regards the illegal sand dealing and dredging activities in various communities all around the state”, he said.
“With those number of complains and pettitions we thought it wise to put up a bill to take care of those issues. Most important thing is that we all know that public hearing is a mechanism by which parliamentary Committees obtain information, deal with the information obtained and also exchange views with experts and the public so as to fine-tune whatever bill there is for the public hearing to come up with a top class bill that will be people- friendly and also save lives of the people in Bayelsa”, he added.
” Lots of suggestions, contributions, opinions and interactions have been made as regards this very important bill, like we have assured the representatives of the various groups that we will go back in our committee, look at those very important areas where they have suggested and also fine tune the bill. So that in no distant time we will come up with a very formidable bill that will stand the test of time. That the people will benefit from”, Ololo reassured.
He lauded participants for their insightful contributions and opinions during the public hearing, promising that the Committee would do justice to come up with a bill that would meet the expectations of Bayelsans.
In her contribution, House Chief Whip and member representing Yenagoa Constituency 2, Hon. Ebiowu Koku Obiyai lamented the deliberate connivance between communities and the sand dealers, warning that if nothing is done to regulate the activities of sand dredgers Bayelsa communities will be eroded away.
The House Whip also expressed concerns on the activities of companies carrying out dredging business near bridges and sued a delibrate efforts by all in order to save the bridges from collapse.
By Ariwera Ibibo-Howells, Yenagoa.
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