No fewer than six People’s Democratic Party (PDP) lawmakers in the Imo House of Assembly have petitioned the speaker, Hon. Chiji Collins, kicking against the headship of the Public Accounts Committee of the house.
In a petition jointly signed by all six PDP lawmakers and made available to newsmen in Owerri on Monday, the lawmakers alleged violation of one of the rules of the Imo House of Assembly.
It was jointly signed by Anyadike Nwosu, Minority leader (Ezinihitte), Frank Ugboma, Deputy Minority leader (Oguta)
and Solomon Anukam, Minority whip (Owerri municipal).
Other signatories are Phillip Ejiogu, Deputy Minority whip (Owerri North ), Okey Onyekanma, former Deputy Speaker (Mbaitoli ), and Tochi Okereke, former Chief Whip (Ngor Okpala).
According to the memo, titled: ‘Headship/membership of the Public Accounts Committee of the Imo State House of Assembly’, the lawmakers argued that such committee is usually headed by a member of the minority party.
They said this is in accordance with the parliamentary convention in the country and in line with international best practices.
The PDP lawmakers said it is regrettable that the Imo Assembly was yet to comply with such parliamentary convention.
They decried the situation where the public accounts committee is headed by a member of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC), Chiagozie Nwaneri, member representing Oru East.
The committee is, however, saddled with the task of probing N19.63b Local Government funds which the Gov. Uzodinma-led APC government has alleged was mismanaged by the former PDP administration of Chief Emeka Ihedioha.
The lawmakers, however, insisted that they were not against the Public Accounts Committee discharging it’s functions.
“It is worrisome that we did not comply essentially to our rules particularly Order XVIII Rule 113 (6) (A) (B) (C) and (D) which stipulates that reports to be considered must be laid before the House of Assembly.
“In the ongoing investigation, we did not comply with our rules.
“I therefore urge you to use your good office as the Chief interpreter of our rules to do justice by appointing the Minority leader as Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee and redirect for the compliance to our rules”, the memo read.