Leke Baiyewu, Abuja
President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, on Tuesday, inaugurated the joint ad hoc committee of the National Assembly to investigate the invasion of the Senate chamber and snatching of the mace by suspected thugs.
Saraki, while inaugurating the committee whose members were drawn from the Senate and House of Representatives, noted that those who attacked the Senate on April 18, 2018, were led by a serving senator.
Deputy Majority Leader of the Senate, Senator Bala Ibn Na’Allah, who is Chairman of the panel, also noted that all those suspected to have links with the attack would be interrogated.
Saraki said, “The events of the 18th of April, 2018, will go down as one of the darkest days of our democracy. The precincts of the National Assembly is not just a place where the National Assembly meets, it is the symbol of our liberty and freedom from autocracy and the base of our democracy.
“This should not happen. It should never have happened. The violation of this solemn place, the symbol of our liberty to have a government by the representatives of our people for our people, by a group of mobsters and criminals cannot simply be ignored.
“It has been inferred in many quarters that this group of thugs and urchins were led by a serving distinguished Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, (this) is most despicable and unspeakable.
“It is clear and remains the duty of the legislature acts, when faced with behaviours that undermine its fundamental integrity like this one, to restore the integrity of the institution. We owe it as a duty not only to this present National Assembly but also those to precede it, that the legislative process is purged of this dirt and the legislature restored to its full place of dignity.
“This is a duty that must be achieved. We cannot let a precedence proceed from this. Everyone involved from conception to execution of this heinous crime must be brought to book.”
The Senate had on April 12, 2018, suspended Omo-Agege for 90 legislative days for dragging the chamber to court over the amendment to the Electoral Act 2010 which seeks to reshuffle the sequence of polls during a general election.
Omo-Agege, after his suspension, had attended plenary on April 18. The lawmaker’s emergency at the chamber had occurred the same time when suspected thugs invaded the Senate chamber while plenary was ongoing and made away with the mace.
While the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Senator Aliyu Sabi-Abdullahi, had issued a statement accusing the lawmaker of leading the attackers into the chamber, Omo-Agege had denied having a link with them.