▪ I have made my point, says Ekweremadu
At about 1.36 p.m., it was clear that former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, had been floored by Senator Ovie Omo-Agege, a Senator many thought would lose on account of allegedly leading thugs to enter the Senate chamber to snatch the mace and run away with it in April last year.
Omo-Agege polled 68 votes to beat Ekweremadu who polled 37 votes. One Senator-elect abstained while one vote was declared invalid.
A veiled reference by Ekweremadu to the storming of the Senate in April 2018 by the thugs, allegedly by Omo-Agege, while making his remarks after being nominated, met with jeers from his colleagues.
Ekweremadu, who is reputed not to have lost an election since he first became a local government chairman decades ago, was humble in defeat as he congratulated Omo-Agege.
The Delta-Central Senator was sworn in, after which the Clerk of the National Assembly, Mohammed Sani Omolori, departed for the House of Representatives to conduct the election of the Speaker and Deputy Speaker.
Shortly after, Senators-elect were sworn-in nine at a time.
In a statement after his loss, former Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, congratulated the newly elected presiding officers of the Ninth Senate, Senator Ahmed Lawan and Senator Ovie Omo-Agege on their elections, adding he has made his point in contesting.
Ekweremadu, who took to his social media handles after the inauguration of the Ninth Senate, said: “I congratulate the President of the Senate, Senator Ahmed Lawan and my successor as Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege on their elections.
“I specially appreciate my colleagues, who supported me as I vied for the office again to preserve the hallowedness and honour of the Senate and uphold equity as a priceless ingredient for building a Nigeria of our dreams.
“I have made my point and my colleagues have made their choice. It is now for us all to join hands across all divides to work for the success of the Ninth Senate and National Assembly as well as the peace and prosperity of our nation.
“I am deeply indebted in gratitude to the good people of Enugu West and well-meaning Nigerians, whose support and prayers have seen me this far. They can rest, assured that I will continue to give them quality representation”.