The Senate has urged security operatives on siege to Deputy President of the Senate, Mr Ike Ekweremadu’s residence, to vacate the place and allow him to enjoy his constitutional right.
This followed a motion by Sen. Chukwuka Utazi at plenary on Tuesday.
He said that the siege was a violation of the right of Ike Ekweremadu, explaining that “this morning I left Enugu for Abuja to attend today’s sitting.
“Half way to the airport, I heard a distress call from the aides working with the Deputy Senate President that his residence and the entire street had been cordoned off and nobody can move out of the house.
“As I am talking now, the people of Enugu State resident in Abuja have moved to his house and they are there shouting in the rain for his release.
“What offence has he committed that would warrant his wife and children to be denied freedom to go about their duties.
“People are worried. We want to know what he has done.
“Some people told me that they heard some people want to defect today and because of that they don’t want him to come to the sitting.
“I also heard that they don’t want the senate president to come so that both presiding officers will not be here but thank God that the Senate President is in this place,” he said.
The lawmaker prayed the senate to demand that Ike Ekweremadu’s resident be vacated.
Supporting the motion, Sen. Sam Anyanwu (PDP-Imo) said the development was a threat to democracy.
He said, “I was with Ekweremadu yesterday and there was no notice from the Police. I wonder why his house is under siege today.
“If he is still wanted they should invite him and he will respond.
“There will be tomorrow. No matter the intimidation my confidence in you and Ekweremadu is renewed and we must protect this institution,” he told Saraki.
Sen. Emmanuel Bwacha (PDP-Taraba) said it was not only a threat to democracy but to the unity of the country.
“It is with a heavy heart I rise to contribute to this. This is not only threatening, but the unity of the country and we need to thread with caution. What is happening has never happened.
“When I heard of the siege I became afraid.
We need prayers and we have to stand up as statesmen. “It is about the institution and the matter is beyond political party but the threat on democracy.
“I advise that security operatives should know they are meant to protect us and no country has used violence to settle matters.
“We can pack our things and go and those trying to dent the image of the president should be careful,” he said.
In his reaction, the President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki, said there was also a siege to his house at the early hours of Tuesday.
He said he was meant to report to the Police on account of invitation to answer to alleged involvement in a robbery case in Offa some months ago but could not do that.
Saraki said there would not have been plenary if he had gone to the Police, given the fact that Ekweremadu was prevented from leaving his house.
“Ekweremadu cannot come out for no fault of his and by the plan I wouldn’t have been here as well.
“It was the intervention of Almighty God that I am here today.
“The deputy senate president called me that he was blocked from coming out. Even my convoy was blocked,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Senate has adjourned plenary for members’ annual vacation. They will resume on Sept. 26.