10 September 2020 by James Itodo.
The Deputy President of the Senate and Chairman, Senate Committee on Constitution Review, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege has called on Nigerians agitating for state creation to reach out to elected representatives and groups from other geopolitical zones in the country.
This, he said, is to get the buy-in of other legislators and groups, especially as they are key in determining if such demands would see the light of the day in the ongoing Constitution amendment exercise.
Senator Omo-Agege made the call in Abuja when he played host to the apex socio-cultural umbrella body of Urhobo people, Urhobo Progress Union (UPU).
The lawmaker said the constitutional review is not a tea party but a very tedious exercise.
According to him “If you check Section 9 of the Constitution, it lays out a very difficult procedure that you must go through before you can achieve success with respect to the amendment.
“As the Chairman of this committee, I am not supposed to take a position. You have to reach out to people, in different geopolitical zones and make your case. If they see the merit in your argument, then they could, acting through their members in the House of Representatives and Senate, go with you and vote in support. You have to go out and lobby. You don’t stay at home and they reward you with a free state. It is only in the military that states are created by Fiat. But under democratic set up in the 1999 Constitution (as amended), the procedures are well laid out under Section 9 of the Constitution” the Lawmaker highlighted.
He assured the UPU representatives that Federal Lawmakers from the area would not support anti-Urhobo legislations in the National Assembly.
He said: “As the representative of the people, we recognise and acknowledge that sovereign power resides with the people at home. Without them, there will be no Deputy President of the Senate. power resides with our people.The consequence of that is we will do what our people want. We will do what is expected of us. We will be guided by the content of your submission”. The Deputy President Of the Senate further explained.
Earlier, leader of the group and Okobaro of Ughievwen Kingdom, Dr. Mathew Ediri Egbi said they decided to pay a courtesy call on the Deputy President of the Senate after submitting their memorandum to the Secretariat of the Constitution Review Committee.
He urged the lawmaker to always protect the interess of Urhobos using his position as the nation’s Number Six Citizen.