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Cross River councillors suspended over alleged dishonesty, embezzlement

Three councillors in the Akpabuyo legislative council have been suspended indefinitely for embezzlement, dishonesty and gross misconduct.

They were accused of diverting N1.2m donated by a State House of Assembly member, Ekeng Effiom Edet, who represents Akpabuyo State constituency which was meant for ten Councilors in the Akpabuyo legislative council.

The action was taken on 1st November, 2022, at the legislative chamber, and their suspension took effect yesterday.

The three Councilors are: Hon. Elijah Effiom Effanga, representing Effanga Offiong Ward and the majority leader of Akpabuyo legislature, Hon. Offiong Offiong Eyo, representing Nakanda ward, Deputy Majority leader, as well as Hon.Etim Bassey Edet, representing Edet Nsa ward.

Deputy leader of the Legislative assembly, Queen Nyong Effiom, representing Eneyo North Ward, moved the motion for their suspension, describing their alleged action as ugly and criminal.

Resolution No 23 of the Council which has to do with the suspension of the three Councilors was invoked.

Other members of the Legislative Council frowned at the conduct of the three Councilors and condemned it.

The substantive motion by Queen Nyong was therefore seconded by Hon. Etim Okon Inyang, Councilor representing Edem Odo ward.

Seven Councilors out of ten voted in support of their suspension from plenary.

Accordingly, the councillors will lose all their benefits during the period of their suspension.

Speaking with journalists, one of the suspended councilors, Offiong Offiong Eyo-Councilor representing Nakanda ward, said the suspension is of no effect.

“The suspension cannot stand. It is of no effect because due process was not followed.

“Nobody can suspend me, and I cannot be hung with my voice,” he said.

Also speaking, leader of Akpabuyo legislature, Ekong Edet Uquo maintained that their suspension will serve as a deterrent to others.

He stressed that the activities of the councillors had breached the moral ethics of the legislature.

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