Chinelo Obogo, Fred Itua, Ndubuisi Orji and Molly Kilete, Abuja
Embattled Senator Elisha Abbo, representing Adamawa North in the Ninth Assembly, allegedly wept bitterly, yesterday, and apologised to the nursing mother he assaulted in a set toy shop in Abuja, earlier this year.
He tendered the apology during a media briefing livestreamed on the Twitter page of the People’s Democratic Paty (PDP).
Senator Abbo apologised to the assault victim, the National Assembly, his party, his family and people who were embarrassed by his conduct.
He said: “I am not here to narrate my side of the story, I am here to apologise and therefore, it is with deep sense of regret and responsibility that I profoundly apologised to all Nigerians, the Senate, the People’s Democratic Party, my family, friends as well as my mothers. I personally apologised to Bibi and her family for my actions. No matter what you did to me, you do not deserve such treatment and I am sorry. “I have never been known for violence; regardless of what transpired, prior to my expression of anger which I am not ready to discuss.
“I am sincerely sorry and I plead that all men and women of good conscience should have the heart to forgive me. To err is human and to forgive is divine.
“My family and religious upbringing will not give me approval for such conduct and as a leader which I have become today, I seek for forgiveness from God almighty and those I have offended by my actions.
“This is not me. My life can never be defined by five minutes. I have stood up for humanity all of my young life; I have stood up for good causes and for those that could not stand for themselves.
“To the Church of God, everywhere in the world, I am sorry. As an ambassador of Christ Jesus, I am sorry and I should live like Christ. “This episode has taught me a lesson both as a private citizen and a public office holder on whom public confidence is bestowed.
“I assure all Nigerians, especially the youths and the people of Adamawa North senatorial district of my good conduct and behaviour,” Abbo said.
He, however, stayed away from yesterday’s plenary, where his colleagues tabled his matter and unanimously resolved to investigate him in a video which showed him slapping the nursing mother, several times.
At plenary, President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, raised a seven-man ad-hoc committee to investigate Abbo.
The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) lawmaker, who is the youngest senator in the Ninth National Assembly, was seen in a 10-minute video footage repeatedly slapping a woman after she pleaded with him not to physically assault the shop owner whom the senator had accused of insulting him. He said the shop owner called him a drunk.
The ad-hoc committee is headed by Samuel Egwu. Other members of the committee are senators Oluremi Tinubu, Stella Oduah, Matthew Urhoghide, Dauda Jika, Danladi Sankara and Mohammed Sani.
In a motion raised by senator Uba Sani, he claimed that the image of the Senate was under threat and cautioned that it could be counterproductive if a decisive action is not taken.
Meanwhile, Abbo answered his party’s summons, yesterday, where he tendered his apology.
The Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, has ordered comprehensive investigation into the incident.
In addition, the IGP assured Nigerians that the police will be professional in handling to ensure that justice is done irrespective of whose ox is gored.
Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba, who made this known, yesterday, said the IGP had equally directed the Commissioner of Police in charge of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Bala Ciroma to “provide a personal and round-the-clock supervision of every facet of the investigation, including the forensic analysis of the video currently in circulation as well as the actions/inactions of the Policeman seen in the video footage.
“The IGP assured citizens of utmost professionalism by the police in the handling of the matter and has promised that the Force will ensure that justice is manifestly done in this case; irrespective of whose ox is gored.”