It is clear that the Ninth House of Representatives is on its final lap and some members are now preparing for re-election.
Others are still facing the reality of the defeat suffered during the primaries.
Although the legislative journey of some members have been cut short by the outcome of the primaries, for a few of them, the cold hand of death ended their legislative and mortal journey. Out of the 360 members that started the journey in June 2019, nine of them have passed on.
Death started knocking on the door even before the swearing-in of members. In March 2019, immediately after the general elections, a member-elect, Garba Butawala, passed away after winning the election to represent Kura/Madobi/Garun Mallam federal constituency in Kano State.
The death rate among members has been blamed on different reasons. The spokesperson of the House, Benjamin Kalu blamed it on demands on the lawmakers from Nigerians.
“Whether you want to understand it or not, let the press know this — that the pressure from constituents is killing members of the National Assembly. That is the truth. The pressure is too much,” Kalu had said.
However, the Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila took a different path in his view about the mortality rate among members.
According to Gbajabiamila, “Beyond the obligations of our office, we have other responsibilities as fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters that require us to take matters of our personal health seriously.”
Two of them died in foreign hospitals, six died in local hospitals and one from a car accident.
Here are the nine lawmakers that have so far died
Illiyasu, who represented Rijau/Magama federal constituency of Niger State, was the first member of the current House of Representatives to kick the bucket.
He died at the Maitama General Hospital in Abuja after a brief illness.
Muhammad Adamu Fagenwo
He represented Garki/Babura federal constituency in Jigawa State. He died on the 31st December 2019 in Dubai where he was undergoing treatment for an undisclosed illness.
The former caucus leader of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, in the House, passed away on the 6th of February, 2021, while on treatment in Germany. He represented Aba North/Aba South in the House before his demise. According to reports, despite the lockdown due to COVID-19 restrictions, he went to London for medical treatment. However, as the situation got worse, he was transferred to Germany where he later died.
Yuguda-Kila, the former Chairman House Committee on Customs, represented Gwaram Federal Constituency of Jigawa State. He died at the National Hospital in Abuja on the 4th of March, 2021, after a protracted illness.
Mr Lere represented Lere Federal Constituency of Kaduna State. He died about 2 months after he was sworn in by the House.
After a long fight in the court to regain his mandate, he was sworn in on the 6th of February 2021 and died on the 17th of April 2021.
Maitala died in a very tragic circumstance alongside his son in a ghastly accident along Abuja-Keffi road. The late lawmaker, who represented Jos North/Bassa Federal Constituency of Plateau State, was travelling to attend the wedding of his son. He died on the 3rd of April.
Mr Omolafe represented Akure North and South federal constituency of Ondo State. He reportedly died at Owo Federal Medical Centre in Ondo State. Omolafe was reported to have slumped in his house and was rushed to the Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on the 16th of August, 2021.
Mr Ekpenyong represented Oron Federal Constituency of Akwa-Ibom State and was former PDP Chairman in the State. According to reports, Mr Ekpenyong was not ill but suddenly died at the age of 58 on the 25th of April, 2022.
Mr Ide-Iden represented Egor/Ikpoba Okha federal constituency of Edo State before his demise on the 1st of July, 2022. He had won his party’s ticket to seek re-election in the 2023 general elections before his demise.
Source: Daily Post