The Akwa Ibom State House of assembly, the 6th assembly has made a critical move against the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Hon. Victor Antai as he will appear before the House Committee on Rules, Business, Ethics and Privileges to explain reason for his refusal to appear before the AKHA through the House committee on Appropriation and Finance.
The Commissioner will also appear before the House Committee on local government and Chieftaincy affairs, Appropriation and Finance committee to ensure compliance with the law and the submission of estimate budget of 2016 having gone half year.
This is sequel to the report brought to the house by Committee Chairman, Appropriation and finance Hon. Usoro Akpanusoh and member representing Esit Eket/ Ibeno State Constituency requesting the House to ask the Hon. Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs to appear before the House and give the House details on why the budget estimates of 31 local government is not approved.
Coming under matter of Urgent Public Important, the chairman House committee on Finance and Appropriation reported to the House that his office has sent two letters dated 23rd May, 2016 and 15 June, 2016 demanding from the commissioner 2016 local government budget estimate which he never acknowledged the receipt of the letter nor appear before the committee.
Reacting to this, the Chairman House committee on Rules, Business Ethics and Privileges, Rt. Hon. Aniekan Uko said local government are turning to something else, stressing that he will not accept any commissioner or government appointee who passed through the screening of the House to disobey the order of the House. He added that the committee chairman is doing his work and that he is working for the entire AKHA and Akwa Ibom State in general.
On his part, member representing Abak State Constituency, Rt. Hon. Friday Iwok said that the Chairman did well by trying to save the commissioner from the eagle eyes of EFCC, ICPC and other anti-craft agencies who would have taken advantage of the failure of his Ministry but he took it for granted, stressing that the commissioner has no right to spend a dime of the local government without a budget estimate otherwise, it will be a contradiction to the law of the land.
Hon. Oto-Obong Johnathan while expressing anger said if this is coming from a seasoned administration, it raises dust how seasoned he is. Adding that since Hon. Antai has abused the privilege to appear before the committee when he was served with the first and second letters, stressing that the only way to handle the matter is to ask the commissioner to appear before the assembly.
Consequently, the Speaker of the Barr. Onofiok Luke ordered Commissioner Antai to appear before the House Committee on Rules, Business, Ethics and privileges and explain to the committee why he had to ignored letters sent to him from this Honourable House and also to appear before the House Committee on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Finance and Appropriation Committee to comply with the law and to submit the budget of 2016 having gone half year.