(By Iheanyi Ezinwo)The Rivers State House of Assembly, made up of over 30 lawmakers has only seven from the opposition All Progressives Congress, APC, while the majority belong to the ruling Peoples Democratic Party.
On isolated cases like the motion to redeploy Akin Fakorede, Commander of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, from Rivers State over alleged meddlesomeness in the governance of the state, members of the opposition party had raised objections. In this case, Hon. Victoria Nyeche and other APC lawmakers expressed reservations, but such differences appear to be an exception than the rule in the state legislature.
While it is a democratic tradition for the minority to have their say and for the majority to have their way, it is noteworthy that, more often than not, the house is unanimous on issues that appear before it because of their relevance to good governance and protection of life and property.
Last week, the Minority leader of the Assembly, Hon. Benebo Anabraba and Hon. Major Jack of the PDP, both of Akuku-Toru State Constituencies presented the “Rivers State Neighbourhood Registration Bill 2017”, to control and regulate proliferation of vigilante security groups in the state.
The proposal, which enjoyed support of members irrespective of party affiliations was considered timely. In his presentation, Hon. Anabraba had explained that, when passed, the law will provide a platform for synergy and cooperation between the security agencies and civilians in managing security in all parts of the state.
The cooperation among lawmakers in the Rivers State House of Assembly extended beyond the bill to regulate vigilante groups.
After debates on the Rivers State College of Health Science, Management and Technology Bill 2017, the proposed law was sent to committee stage with the blessing of all, irrespective of party affiliations.
Speaking on the bill, Hon. Victoria Nyeche of the APC, said the bill has a lot of merits, and so should be moved to the next stage.
Earlier, Hon. Martins Amaewhule, Majority leader had explained that the new executive bill seeks to expand the objective of the institution in tune with current realities in the health sector.
Meanwhile, observers of the activities of the 8th Assembly under the leadership of Rt. Hon. Ikuinyi Owaji-Ibani are full of commendations for the speaker.
According to the publisher of Notable Outcome, Iheanyi Ezinwo, the current speaker ranks among the best, who have presided over the affairs of the legislature.
The publisher observed that the incumbent speaker has the right kind of temperament, knowledge of the politics and rules of the house required to succeed, while playing his role very well as a team player.