The battle to control the Benue State House of Assembly and has taken a rather strange twist as the Clerk of the Assembly and Civil Servants working under the Benue Assembly Tuesday bounced from accessing the Complex to carry out their normal duties by heavily armed Police men who have besieged the Assembly Premises since last week.
Despite a Makurdi high Court injunction last Friday directing the police to vacate the Assembly premises, the police have given deaf ears to the Orders and rather swung the pendulum of siege from Benue Legislators against the workers of the Assembly generating more tension.
Speaking to Journalists after he was denied entrance,Clerk of the Benue State House of Assembly, Dr. Torese Agena appealed to the Benue State Commissioner of Police to prevail on the Federal forces to withdraw their men from the Complex so as to allow the civil servants continue with their assigned responsibilities.
“Today Tuesday the 31st July 2018,the Staff of the Benue State House of Assembly were after two hours of resumption of work received orders from security men that the Commissioner of Police,Benue State Command was given an order that those Staff should vacate the Assembly.This to me a harassment to me that is too many because for two weeks now Staff of the Assembly have not being allowed to do their work and that is why we want you to assist us tell the Commissioner of Police Benue State to Prevail on the Commander in-Chief of this Country to direct the IG of Police to withdraw his men from the premises of the Benue State House of Assembly so that Staff can do their work unhindered.
“As am talking now, the Police men are still there,you will not see any Staff there now because I was Chased out of the premises.They told us that the Commissioner of Police has ordered them to order us to leave the complex that was the reason they gave.It was as vague as that, no definite time was given to us to come back, we were just asked to leave. And you know the implications, we are not allowed to do our work and so that is going to impede on the work of the legislature and that is going to affect the generality of Benue”, the Clerk Benue Assembly queried.
Attempts to contact the Benue State Police Commissioner,CP Besan Gwana for more questioning proved futile as he could not be reached and the State PPRO, ASP Moses Yamu could not pick calls nor resply to text messages.
However the Police Commissioner Benue State Command, CP Gwana confirmed the tension through the Chief Security Adviser to Benue State Governor, Rtd. Col Paul Hembah that the directives were from him,but insisted that he was acting based on orders from above.
The Benue State Security Adviser who spoke to newsmen relaid that the CP was headed for Abuja for a summit with the IGP from where he said he hope to receive further directives on the reopening of the Benue Assembly Complex.
Recall that troops had since Friday placed the Benue State House of Assembly under lock and key denying 22 out of 30 members of the Assembly entrance into the Chambers to the secured advantage of the minority eight members of the Assembly who attempted to commence impeachment proceedings against Governor Samuel Ortom.