A coalition of Civil Society Group (CSOs) on Monday demanded the immediate resignation of the Deputy Senate President (DSP) Ovie Omo-Agege, over alleged committal of forgery and perjury in contravention of the 1999 constitution as amended.
The group alleged that the DSP concealed his conviction by the state bar court of California, los Angeles, United States of America (USA), in case No. 94-C-14401, and he willfully concealed the fact of the said conviction from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Nigerian Senate thereby contravening the provisions of the Nigerian Constitution and the Rules of the Senate.
The Convener of the group, Comrade Solomon Adodo, who addressed journalists in Abuja enjoined the Senate to immediately initiate impeachment proceedings against Omo-Agege in the interest of the nation.
He said: “Our scrupulous findings revealed that the said Augustine O. Omo-Agege was admitted into the State Bar of California on December 14, 1992. The records further revealed that on or about March 7, 1992, the said Augustine O. Omo-Agege was alleged to have committed the crime of forgery of check in violation of Penal code section 470, a felony.
“Furthermore, on or about March 7, 1993 the said Augustine O. Omo-Agege was alleged to have committed the crime of perjury-application for Driver’s license in the County of Los Angeles in violation of Penal code section 118, a felony.
“Following a lengthy prosecution of the said allegations levelled against Augustine O. Omo-Agege, he was convicted of violating California Penal code section 470 and was also subsequently suspended from the practice of law pending final disposition of the proceeding.
“As true Guardians of Democracy and firm advocates of transparency in governance, we are deeply perturbed at the fact that Sen. Ovie Omo-Agege concealed all these information INEC thus he was allowed to participate in the general elections, contrary to constitutional provisions that produced him as Senator representing Delta Central Senatorial District.
“In violation of the Senate Rules he also concealed the said information from the Nigerian Senate thereby paving the way for his emergence as Deputy President of the Senate. All these have resulted in the denigration of the image and esteem of the Nigerian Senate before the international body of legislators.
“We can confidently state howbeit with patriotic pains and disenchantment that Sen. Ovie Omo-Agege cannot confidently and freely lead a team of legislators to Capitol Hill for any meeting with the US Senate owing to the weight of conviction against him in the United States of America.”
He, thus called on law enforcement agencies to initiate fresh prosecution against Delta state born lawmaker for the grievous offence of perjury and denigration of the Nigerian Constitution.
Reacting to the allegations, DSP Omo-Agege faulted the allegations, describing the rights group as a band of unscrupulous mischief makers bent on tarnishing his hard earned reputation.
Omo-Agege who spoke through his media aide, Yomi Odunuga, claimed he was cleared of all charges in the said case and he was never a convict in the USA as being alleged; till date, as he travels freely to and within the country without any hint of harassment.
He said: “Over the past few days, the DSP has visited the US and Canada for personal and official reasons respectively, holding aloft the beacon of progressive ideology and an agenda for improving Nigeria’s image internationally.”