The Nigerian Senate says it can’t declare the seat of Senator Biobarakuma Degi-Eremienyo, the sacked deputy governor-elect of Bayelsa State vacant.
The stand of the upper chamber is amidst a certificate forgery case that led to the Supreme Court annulling the joined ticket of Chief David Lyon and Senator Degi both of the APC in Bayelsa State.
Senator Godiya Akwashiki, who is the Spokesman for the Senate, insisted that Senator Degi-Eremienyo, remains a member of the Senate.
According to Akwashiki, the Supreme Court did not address the issue of his senatorial status while delivering judgment on the Bayelsa governorship election.
He said the process to recall a senator could only start if they were dead, had a recall demand from his constituency or through a court pronouncement directing INEC to withdraw their certificate of return.
Akwashiki said, “The process of declaring somebody’s seat vacant is in three stages based on the provisions of the law.
“It is either by death; If his constituents demand his recall, or if any court of law, (tribunal, appeal, or Supreme Court), ordered that INEC should withdraw their certificate of return.
“In this situation, the judgment did not say anything about his (Degi-Eremienyo’s) senatorial seat.
“The judgment only addressed the issue of the Bayelsa State governorship election.
“Also in the case of Degi-Eremienyo, he has not taken any oath of allegiance.
“The oath of allegiance that he took in the Senate still subsists since the Supreme Court did not mention his seat at the Senate in its judgment.
“For now, the Senate cannot do anything about his seat. He is still, a democratically elected member of the Senate.”