Who Is Afraid Of Imo Deputy Speaker Okey Onyekanma? - AFRICAN PARLIAMENTARY NEWS



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Monday, January 6, 2020

Who Is Afraid Of Imo Deputy Speaker Okey Onyekanma?

By Olu Ibekwe

The social media has recently witnessed the circulation of baseless,  false, fictitious and malicious qrite-up against the Deputy Speaker of the Imo State House of Assembly and member representing Mbaitoli State Constituency, and Rt. Hon. Okey Onyekanma.
That the story in question was politically motivated can be seen from its opening paragraph where it stated that Onyekanma "appears to be facing a tough time in his legislative sojourn".
In his New Year broadcast, Governor Ihedioha stated that "our harmonious working relationship with the legislature has resulted in an unprecedented record breaking 18 Bills passed and signed into Law since we were sworn-in. This is an envious milestone by any standard". The bills signed into law included the Imo 2020 Appropriation Bill which the Governor signed on December 27, 2019.
It is on record that of the 18 bills passed by the Assembly and signed into law by Governor Ihedioha, two of them were sponsored by Rt. Hon. Onyekanma. Another of his sponsored bills has been passed by the House awaiting the Governor's assent while two are at Committee stage. There are three others awaiting Second Reading.
These are no mean achievements within his first six months in the Assembly. How then can a legislator with such an enviable record be described as facing a tough time in his legislative sojourn?.
Fortunately, seventeen members of the Imo State House recently passed vote of confidence on the Speaker, Rt. Hon. Dr. Chiji Collins and his Deputy, Rt. Hon. Okey Onyekanma.
The motion called on those it described as "political detractors" to desist from dragging the good name of the Deputy Speaker to the mud over his commendable role in ensuring that the house members were provided with official vehicles to enable them carry out their oversight duties after seven months in office.
The members also called on the detractors whose political motive was to destabilize the House and cause division amongst the members in order to cause a change in leadership of the House, to have a rethink.
They described Hon. Onyekanma as a man of "impeccable character" and an accomplished legal practitioner who has carved a niche in intellectual property law practice.
The House members then called on Imo people to ignore the baseless and politically motivated allegations against Hon. Onyekanma and those behind the story, reminding them that the said Toyota Prado jeeps having been purchased through a bank facility, came with manufacturer's warranty and insurance such that any member with issues should approach the bank that facilitated the transaction/ the dealer that supplied the Prado jeeps rather than resorting to mischief.
It would be recalled that Rt. Hon. Okey Onyekanma, a Law graduate of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, went through years of tutelage under the late former President of the Pan African Parliament, Rt. Hon. Bethel Amadi.  He has brought his experience as a former legislative aide at both Nigeria's House of Representatives and the Pan African Parliament (the legislative organ of the African Union) to bear as Chairman of the House of Assembly Committee on Rules and Business.

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