yesterday that the Senate would not allow Senator Ovie Omo-Agege to return to the chamber any time soon, following Wednesday’s invasion by thugs who also snatched the mace.
Although Omo-Agege has denied any relationship with the perpetrators of the act, many of his colleagues appear not to be convinced by the senator’s defence.
Consequently, they are pushing for his suspension for the rest of the legislative days of the 8th Senate.
The fate of the former Chairman of Northern Senators Forum, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, is also shaky as he was said to have been put on the spot at an executive (close) session on Thursday where senators also identified five reasons why thugs invaded the hallowed chamber.
Although Adamu was said to have fought back and stoutly defended himself against the accusations levelled against him, the senators were unanimous in their decision to get to the roots of the invasion and enhance the security situation in the National Assembly.
The senators may also demand Omo-Agege’s prosecution after its internal investigation and the outcome of the findings of the Nigeria Police and the Department of State Security Service.
A principal officer of the Senate said: “The coincidence between Omo-Agege’s entry into the chamber and the invasion by the thugs was more than met the eye.
“Most of us are of the opinion that our colleague desecrated the Upper Chamber of the National Assembly.
“We have resolved that we will not allow him to resume sitting in the chamber under any excuse.
“Once a Senator is suspended rightly or wrongly, he or she has no business in the chamber.
“The coming of Omo-Agege on Wednesday was an affront.
“His suspension might be unfair, but he should not have fought his way into the chamber.”
Another Senator said: “Some of us have demanded for outright suspension of Omo-Agege for the rest of the legislative days in the 8th Senate.
“Actually, Omo-Agege was to be suspended for six months but the head of one of the security agencies prevailed on the leadership of the Senate to reduce it to 90 days.
“Now, with the desecration of the chamber by thugs, we believe he has no business in the 8th Senate anymore.”
At a stormy session on Thursday, the Senators were able to identify five accumulated factors which accounted for the invasion of the Senate chamber.
The reasons are as follows:
*Continuous fallout of June 9, 2015 election of principal officers
*Suppression of dissenting voices in the Senate
*Rating of some Senators higher or lesser than others by the Senate leadership
*Existence of caucuses and unfair ban on Parliamentary Support Group which is pro-President Muhammadu Buhari
*Alleged lack of fairness by the leadership of the Senate
According to investigation, the Senators bared their minds at an Executive Session on Thursday to conduct a post-mortem on what went wrong.
It was learnt that the star of the session was Sen. Kabir Marafa (Zamfara) who opened up on many issues affecting the unity of the Senate.
Others who spoke were Senators Abdullahi Adamu (Nasarawa), Dino Melaye (Kogi), Ogola Foster (Bayelsa), Senate Leader Ahmad Lawan and the Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, who presided over the session.
A ranking senator said: “At the session, Senators put Abdullahi Adamu on the spot. He was accused of making his residence available for meetings by members of the Parliamentary Support Group of which Senator Omo-Agege is its secretary.
“But Adamu said he had no hand in the invasion of the chamber.
“He also said the PSG is a caucus group outside the chamber as it is the case with the Like Minds (supporting Saraki), the Unity Forum, the Northern Senators Forum and others in the Senate.
“He said parliamentary caucus is legitimate all over the world.”
It was gathered that Senator Marafa stole the show when he said all senators were guilty of the mess the Senate has found itself.
He picked on Adamu, saying: “Some of you in this PSG today abandoned the Unity Forum to support Saraki’s emergence as Senate President. When it was convenient, you opened doors for Saraki.
“This same Senator Adamu was once with Saraki and at a point spoke against President Muhammadu Buhari. I belonged to the Unity Forum, I did not work for Saraki but he appointed me a strategic committee chairman.
A Senator from the North-West said: “At the session, Senators backing Saraki spoke and those who belong to the left wing. We all focused on how our chamber became polluted with vested interests.”
Asked of Adamu’s fate, the Senator added: “It is still shaky, we do not know what they will do to him.”
“We cited the fact that the Senate leadership has some favourites through which motions were usually imposed on members.
“The Senators tagged Like Minds behind Saraki would have met before any sitting and they will just ride us roughshod in the Senate.
“Those in Like Minds do not allow alternative views in the Senate. Once a Senator speaks against a motion Saraki and his ‘boys’ are interested in, you are tagged as anti-leadership in a Senate that we are all equals.
“For instance, we condemned Omo-Agege’s behaviour, but some of us suspected that he acted out of frustration.
“When the debate on Order of Elections was on, Omo-Agege called for a division but he was ignored by the Senate President.
“Yet after this same Omo-Agege apologised for expressing his dissenting views, he was suspended through a script already acted by the Like Minds.
“The Senate Committee on Ethics and Privileges has been doing a hatchet man’s job.
“Some Senators said the way out is to return the Senate to a chamber of equality, robust debates, accepting the reality of dissent views and allowing caucuses to exist and fairness to all.”
Another Senator said: “Well, some of our colleagues expressed regrets that some Senators have been made lesser than the other.”
On his part, Senator Dino Melaye pointed accusing finger at the PSG for the invasion of the chamber.
In a fit of anger, he added: “They still had a meeting yesterday (Wednesday).”
The Senate Leader, Ahmad Lawan, was said to have appealed for calm, understanding and tolerance.
But Senator Ogola Foster redirected the session to the issue of the invasion of the chamber.
He said: “We should face the reality. Someone desecrated the Senate chamber. We must investigate it and take appropriate action.”
The Deputy President of the Senate, Dr. Ike Ekweremadu, took time to listen to all views and expressed the resolve of the Senate to protect the nation’s democracy.
A senator from the South-East said: “Although we did not arrive at any resolution at the Executive Session, Ekweremadu’s address later on the floor was a summary of what transpired.
“We want an investigation into the invasion, and the law must take its course.”