The Oasis Reporters
June 17, 2019
The moment the news emerged that one hitherto, little known senator from one of the minority tribes of the South south has elected as the Deputy Senate President, the frenzy in the media became heightened. Anger beclouded reasoning and doomsday prophets were unrestrained in calling Ovie Omo Agege, senator from Delta Central senatorial district a mace thief and all what not, without looking deeply into the issues surrounding his emergence.
There’s a ruling party at the center of Nigeria’s politics, and that is the APC. Senator Ovie Omo Agege is a member of that party and he’s from a PDP controlled region, which narrows the search by the party for that position of Deputy Senate President to him.
What many analysts remember about him is that as he entered the Senate chambers one fateful day while Nigerians were watching proceedings on live TV, a few young men, perhaps four of them, used the opportunity to sneak in and snatch the Mace, which is a symbol of authority and dignity of the legislative branch. Almost everyone found it convenient to point accusing fingers at Omo Agege as the mace thief. As bad as that one was howbeit wrong, no one paused to consider why those allegedly called Warri boys took away the mace forcefully from the chambers.
Ovie Omo Agege was suspended indefinitely from the Senate by its then strongmen because he was accused of being a knight in shining armor, defending a fabled “lady in distress”, this time, the leader of his party, President Muhammadu Buhari.
And who were the strongmen that enforced the suspension which denied the people of Delta Central Senatorial district of any representation, rather punitively?
They were the same nPDP stalwarts that ganged up with the then opposition APC party to scuttle the reelection of the only Nigerian president from a minority zone and one who made Nigeria the number one Foreign Direct Investment destination in Africa and the biggest economy in the continent. They played a huge role in making Goodluck Jonathan lose to Muhammadu Buhari.
When events failed to go their way in their new abode, the APC, they moved again to bring the APC down, just as they tried to destroy the PDP of old. They still went back to the PDP.
Meanwhile, they sit in the Senate allocating jumbo allowances to themselves, funds that principally come from the Niger Delta to swell the Nigerian financial chest. While enjoying the largesse offered by the minority region, they were busy ganging up to deny the region, representation in the Senate!
That act probably fueled the anger in those four Warri boys to the extent of disrupting the proceedings of the Senate. More or less, it was a protest action, like Black South Africans protesting against apartheid, or blacks in America boycotting buses to draw attention to their plight.
But rather than listen and investigate the reasons behind the forceful removal of the mace from the house, a few vocal citizens have been calling Omo Agege names rather unfairly. A lady on Facebook practically called the senator a mace thief and a thug and she got this question :
“Why did Omo Agege come to the Senate chambers and a set of 4 boys saw an opportunity to snatch the Mace?
What could have prompted his protest action?”
Her answer : “he felt aggrieved over his suspension by the Senate.”
Response: “Thank you.
“In other words, he was protesting over his restriction from representing his district. If he would be suspended by his peers from representing his people, then the Mace must be carried away. Let his peers too, not have the legitimate symbol to represent their people.
It was a protest action against injustice.
So, how does that make him a thief ?”\
Writing on the theme, “Omo-Agege: Just Reward”, social media commentator, Ena Ofugara had this to say:
“Ovie Omo-Agege worked for this position just as Orji Uzor Kalu and a thousand others schemed for better placement in the Nigerian table seating arrangement.
Saraki and Atiku all went to APC and some got what they wanted and some wanted more. Everyone has a right to want and scheme for more.
Senator Omo Agege found his opportunity to stand and be counted when he capitalized on the D.I.D (Damsel in distress) scenario and fought for Buhari over the voting arrangement. Orji Uzor Kalu’s own was to go and take title from Katsina.
For less money but more Warri akpako way, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege distinguished himself in the eyes of Buhari, APC and the cabal. What others have tried to do and failed, he risked it all and was called names like MACE THIEF etc.
Who curse done kill once?
The smart lawyer and his Warri ways showed loyalty to the powers that be and he has been rewarded.
Dino Malaye did same thing in 2015. He was Buhari’s hatchet man. He jumped fences, wore T-shirts that insulted Jonathan and his wife. He was loud and he got rewarded by the cabal. Just. because he fell out with them over WHO GETS WHAT WHEN AND HOW (classic definition of power) does not make him my hero nor yours. He can sing all the gospel songs in the world in the chamber for all I care.
Senator Ovie Omo-Agege worked for this one. High risk, high yield. He fought Saraki and the then senate powers to a standstill, overturned their purported suspension, picked up his Senate seat in a PDP Delta state against both internal and external aggression etc etc. He went against more dominant tribes and more established names to become DSP.
Who even thought an Urhobo man will be anything in this Fulani-Yoruba arrangement? Oh well, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege did his permutations and made his bets. Like Orji Kalu, Saraki, Dino etc who did theirs earlier, Omo Agege came late to the party but still found enough stew to lick.
So for his supporters, EVERYWHERE STEW
They believed, they fought and they did it. Fair play to them
It is time to stop being fox and sour grapes and to realize PDP with their support of Ndume and our quietness shows everyone also played the position game and there were winners and losers. Ovie Omo-Agege won. And he won fair and square.
Congrats to the Distinguished Senator and the Deputy Senate President of the 9th Assembly.
Power is WHO GETS WHAT, WHEN and HOW. Senator Omo-Agege seems to understand this.
He deserves some accolades.
For us who have no dog in the fight, we continue to watch moves and smile. We clap for the winners like the audience we are.
PDP must regroup and restrategize. They are losing at every turn.
What the hell anyway? Who will be PDP presidential candidate in 2023?
Your guess is as good as mine. We have no political parties but mere platforms for achieving selfish goals.
Ovie Omo Agege has scored his goal.
And honestly, I do not see how Ovie Omo Agege’s emergence or Ekweremadu’s helps Nigeria. It is personal aggrandizement as I have said over and again.
At least as an Urhobo man wherein we get nothing ever in politics, I can watch the emotive but phantasmagorical pleasure of my people celebrating a tribal achievement. It is nothing to your big tribe but something to some of my people. So for them I smile.”
Additional contribution: Ena Ofugara
Mr. Ofugara lives in the United States where he writes from.