Friday, August 7,2020
Supporters of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have staged a protest at the Edo State House of Assembly complex in Benin City, the state capital.
The protesters, comprising women and youths, stormed the Assembly complex on Friday while security operatives keep watch at the facility for the second day.
They pledged their support for the state governor, Godwin Obaseki, and prayed for peace to reign in the state.
The PDP supporters also threw their weight behind a factional Speaker of the House, Frank Okiye, saying they recognise him only as the leader of the legislative arm of government in Edo.
They, however, rejected another factional Speaker of the House, Victor Edoror, who was claimed to have been inaugurated by 17 lawmakers on Thursday.
The protesters also condemned the inauguration of 14 lawmakers-elect in Edo at a private residence in the state capital.
They insisted that the inauguration of the lawmakers was done in violation of the law, stressing that the lawmakers had missed their chance to join the House.
The protest held hours after Governor Obaseki addressed residents of the state where he condemned the takeover of the State House of Assembly complex.
In a state-wide broadcast, he described the incident as an attempted coup d’état that was tantamount to treason and contrary to the provisions of the Nigerian Constitution.
The governor, however, gave an assurance that his administration would take all steps necessary to defend the rule of law and democratic ideals.
“Any person or group of persons who set out to test our will in this regard will meet with the full wrath of the law,” the governor warned.
He added, “These events portend grave danger to the safety and security of our polity. It had all the hallmarks of an attempted coup d’état.
“The people of Edo State rose as one to prevent the desecration of our democracy. It is, however, worrisome that certain persons are willing to plunge the society into avoidable anarchy and conflict just to satisfy their illegitimate objectives.”