By Lucky Isibor
The Edo State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP has reacted to the defection of Hon. Johnson Ehiozuwa Agbonayima to APC, Thursday on the floor of the House of Representatives, Abuja, urging him to resign and insisting the mandate is for the party, while adding he must seek a fresh mandate in his new party.
State publicity secretary of the party, Chris Nehikhare, stated this Thursday, in a statement made available to news men in Benin City.
According to Nehikhare, “Hon EJ Agbonayima like all Nigerians is free to associate with any political association of his choosing. He voluntarily joined PDP and he is free to move to any party of his choice.
“However, Edo PDP frowns at his decision not to resign his membership of the House of Representatives before moving to his new political abode. He was elected under the platform of PDP and as such the mandate is ours.
He noted that, “His conduct is in breach of the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria and it is only right, proper and mandatory that his seat is declared vacant.
“For the avoidance of doubt, It is to be recalled that in Agundade’s case, he had argued that given the internal crisis, division and factionalization within the Labour Party, he was entitled by virtue of the proviso in Section 109(1)(g) of the 1999 Constitution to defect from the Labour Party to the ACN without losing or having to vacate his seat in the House. The court however ruled that since he could not prove division or factionalization within the Labour Party, he was not entitled to keep or retain his seat after he decamped to the ACN. That he vacated his seat upon defection to the ACN by operation of law.
“You will agree with me that PDP has no division or faction. Consequently, Hon EJ Agbonayima’s seat should be declared vacant.
“Edo PDP will approach the courts to so declare,” the statement said
Hon. Johnson Ehiozuwa Agbonayima, AKA EJ, is the member representing Ikpoba-Okha Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives. He won the seat on the platform of the PDP in the 2015 general election and defected to the ruling APC Thursday, on the floor of the House.