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Rivers lawmakers Who Switched from PDP To APC have lost their seats – Falana 

River's lawmakers Who Left PDP have lost their seats- Falana

Human rights advocate, Femi Falana, Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), has asserted that members of the Rivers State House of Assembly who switched allegiance from the (PDP) Peoples Democratic Party to the All Progressives Congress (APC) have forfeited their seats in the house.

Falana made these remarks during an interview on Channels TV’s Sunday Politics program. He highlighted that 25 lawmakers aligned with the former governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, had defected to the APC amidst a political dispute between Wike and Governor Siminalayi Fubara.

Emphasizing the constitutional implications of such defections, Falana underscored that legislators cannot retain their seats if they switch parties without demonstrating division within their original political party. He referred to a court order restraining the 25 lawmakers from representing themselves as legislators in the state, as well as prohibiting the speaker from identifying himself as the house speaker.

Falana elaborated on the legal precedent established by the Supreme Court in cases like Adetunde and the Labour Party, emphasizing that legislators must seek a fresh mandate from their constituents if they switch parties, unless there is clear evidence of national-level division within their original party.

The political feud between Fubara and Wike escalated last year when the Assembly, largely comprised of Wike’s supporters, made moves to impeach the governor. Subsequently, 27 lawmakers, led by Martin Amaewhule, defected from the ruling PDP to the APC, citing internal divisions within the PDP as their primary reason for transitioning to the APC.

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