THE Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Rules and Business, Honourable Albert Sam-Tsokwa, at the weekend, lambasted those who are attacking the House over killing of the motion on controversial $9.3 million allegedly smuggled into South Africa by two Nigerians and an Israeli to buy arms for security agencies in the country.
He said the House was in order over the way and manner the motion was treated.
To this end, the House Chairman equally defended the Deputy Speaker of the House, Honourable Emeka Ihedioha, who presided over the House sitting the day the motion was taken, saying that he did not block debate on the motion as being suggested in some quarters.
Honourable Sam-Tsokwa at a press conference on the matter stated that: “the House is precluded from discussing any issue that is pending in court. Our rules also say motions on infrastructure, security and investigation are not to be debated. The motion on $9.3 million seeks an investigation, so it shouldn’t and mustn’t have been debated. That was exactly what happened.”
Speaking further, he said: “the mover wasn’t supposed to take it that day, because it wasn’t on the order paper. He insisted on taking it because he said he was away on speaker’s errand. But any matter that is not on the notice paper can’t be included on the order paper. Some members were against taking the motion, but the Deputy Speaker allowed him.”
He added that, “the decision wasn’t taken on the basis of party. It wasn’t all APC members that voted against it and vice-versa. Let me use this medium to call on our leaders to stop making provocative statements that will tear this country apart. If you’re ignorant of how the House operates, I’ll advise that you keep your mouth shut.”
It will be recalled that the motion was taken on the floor of the House last Tuesday, but Honourable Ihedioha, who presided over plenary that day, did not allow debate on the motion, citing ‘national security.’ He later called for a voice vote and majority of the lawmakers voted against it, this decision did not go down well with the All Progressives Congress (APC) lawmakers in the House and subsequently staged a walk out.