KOGI House of Assembly on Tuesday, threatened to sue Leadership Newspaper over what it termed “libelous editorial comments”, condemning its stand on the report of the State Staff Audit Committee.
The resolution followed the adoption of a motion on Matters of Urgent Public Importance raised by Mr Sunday Shigaba (PDP-Bassa), over the branding of its members as “PDP syndicates and renegades of the APC ” by the newspaper.
Shigaba said that the newspaper editorial of Jan. 20, 2017 edition, titled; “Our Stand As Kogi Buries Ghost workers”, had smeared the integrity of the House and should not be condoned.
Shigaba described the editorial as an affront on the assembly and its members, adding that it was mischievous, malicious and an attempt to batter the image of the state assembly.
Seconding the motion, Mr Oluwatoyin Lawal (PDP-Yagba West), commended the mover of the motion as he described the editorial as the position of the editorial board of the paper, adding that the publication was libelous and in bad taste.
Lawal said the Assembly as an arm of government, had the right to unanimously take a stand on certain policies and decisions of government as representatives of the people.
He added that the position of the House was aimed at ensuring good governance which the paper claimed to protect.
He queried a situation where genuine workers were denied their legitimate wages for between six and 12 months or where a worker is punished with dismissal or sack as a result of the management to promote him or her.
The Deputy Speaker, Mr Aliyu Akuh (PDP-Omala) and John Abah (PDP-Ibaji) ,and condemned the publication while the Majority Leader, Matthew Kolawole (PDP-Kabba-Bunu), described the editorial as indicting, inciting and incriminating.
Ruling on the motion, the House Speaker, Umar Imam said though the intention behind the screening exercise was a good one, but the modalities adopted were faulty and the House in its entirety without recourse to party or ethnic leanings condemned the report.
Imam urged the House to remain calm and united as he directed its Legal Department to wade into the matter and initiate a legal move to redress the issue.
“What we are doing here as an arm of government is to help the state and the people attain good governance through positive representation,” he said.