•I didn’t bring hoodlums to chamber, says senator
The Federal Government has directed security agencies to immediately unravel the circumstances surrounding the breach of security which led to the invasion of the Senate chamber, yesterday, and snatching of the mace.
The federal government expressed shock at the action and, in a statement issued in Abuja, by the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, ordered that security around the National Assembly complex be reinforced to prevent a recurrence.
Meanwhile, Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, met with Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, behind closed doors at the Presidential Villa, in Abuja, yesterday.
The meeting came hours after some hoodlums invade Senate plenary and made away with the mace, which is the chamber’s symbol of authority.
Speaking to State House Correspondents after the meeting, Ekweremadu said he went to update Osinbajo on what happened earlier at the Senate.
“It is the responsibility of the president or the vice president to ensure that there is law and order in the country and once we have this kind of major development, it is important that he is briefed at the earliest opportunity.
“So, the Senate President is out of the country, it is, therefore, my responsibility to brief the vice president. He has sympathised with us over what happened and he is going to join forces with us to ensure we get to the root of the matter; to make sure that this does not happen again.
“For us, it’s a threat to our democracy, the invasion of the parliament was not acceptable to any person, it was not acceptable to me, it was not acceptable to the vice president, it was not acceptable to my colleagues, I believe it was not also acceptable to the president, so, those who acted this script must be on their own.
“All we need to do as a country is to ensure that this is forestalled and I want to appeal to the media to help us discourage this kind of brigandage so that people have to behave in a very responsible manner. But, let me assure you that we are on top of the situation, we did our sitting today and we are going to continue tomorrow.”
Meanwhile, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege has debunked claims that he brought hoodlums to invade the Senate Chamber.
A statement issued by an aide, Lucky Ajos said the lawmaker resumed work, yesterday, like other senators, and that he did not order the removal of the Senate mace.
“On Thursday, April 12, Senate purportedly suspended senator Ovie Omo-Agege. However, based on legal advice and understanding of the current position of the law, senator Omo-Agege resumed work and sitting with his colleagues.
“A few champions of the unconstitutional, invalid and tyrannical suspension tried to stop him but those who opposed it welcomed and protected him throughout the sitting. We are grateful to the many distinguished Senators who stood by senator Omo-Agege.”
Ajos added that Omo-Agege’s office was also aware of a statement issued by the Senate spokesperson, Abdullahi Sabi.
“We are carefully studying senator Sabi’s allegations to ascertain their full ramifications. Appropriate responses will follow, as may be necessary,” he said.