Imo female lawmaker survives alleged attack from colleague

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Representative of Njaba Constituency in the House of Assembly, Uju Onwudiwe, has survived an attack by her Ahiazu Mbaise constituency colleague, Samuel Otuibe, who threw a bottle of wine and glass cup at her in a meeting.

The incident took place during an emergency meeting of the lawmakers at the official quarters of the Deputy Speaker, Amara Iwuanyanwu in Owerri. The Guardian learnt that the meeting was convened to discuss non- payment of salaries of the lawmakers and their aides, as well as alleged impeachment plot against the Speaker, Chiji Collins.

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It was also learnt that the crisis started after representative of Orsu constituency, Ngozi Obiefule demanded that Collins should explain why he accused her of killing her husband.

While Otuibe tried to silence her, Onwudiwe insisted that Obiefule should be allowed to make her case, since she still had the floor, which resulted in both lawmakers exchanging words at which point Otuibe threw the bottle of wine and glass cup at her.

However, the bottle smashed the wall and injured representative of Ohaji/Egbema constituency, Heclus Okoro on his finger.Onwudiwe, who confirmed the attack on the telephone, yesterday, said it was only through God’s grace that she dodged the bottle from hitting her on the head and possibly killing her.

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On whether she would sue Otuibe, she said, “Although I have communicated my lawyer, I will allow the House to deal with the matter first. The legislature has a way of handling such matters. The House rules will be invoked and applied appropriately.”

In his reaction, Otuibe denied attacking his female colleague, insisting that they had mere exchange of words. But Obiefule said Otuibe would be lying if he denied attacking Onwudiwe with a bottle of wine and a glass cup, adding that his (Otuibe’s) attack on Onwudiwe was barbaric, “because she only told him to stop silencing me, while I was speaking, but he immediately threw the bottle at Onwudiwe, which shattered Okoro’s finger. But the Speaker has called severally to apologise.”

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When contacted on telephone, Collins said he had mandated the House Committee Chairman on Information and Judiciary, Dominic Ezerioha, to handle the matter and report to the House for further action.

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