By Ignatius Okorocha
Former National Chairman of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Chief Victor Umeh, was on Thursday sworn-in by the Senate President, Abubakar Bukola Saraki, as the Senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial District in the Upper House.
The event, which took place in the early hours of Senate plenary on Thursday witnessed the massive turn out of cheering APGA supporters who arrived at National Assembly complex in the company of Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State.
The supporters took over the entire Senate gallery and almost dislodged journalists at new Press Centre cheering Umeh who they declared as their great leader while viewing the event being transmitted live.
Umeh told Senate Correspondents after the ceremony that despite the period lost while awaiting judicial pronouncement on the actual winner of the 2015 Senatorial election, he vowed that he would ensure effective participation in legislations that would lead to good governance.
He promised that despite the period loss in actualising the ambition to come to the Senate he would leave no stone unturned in attracting the dividends of democracy to the zone.
According to him, “the race to Anambra Senatorial District seat appears to be a long drawn battle. I am very happy that the institutions that have roles to play in this matter were patient enough for us to get to this stage where the person who did not only win the election in 2015, but was rigged out was given the opportunity to go through the legal process to get the victory which brought me here on the 13th of January, 2018.
He continued: “No that doubt much has been lost particularly by my people of Anambra Senatorial District, but there is no loss that would be greater than the loss of due process, obedience to the laws, obedience to the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“I am very happy that at last I have been vindicated, so much was done, so much loss to come to this Senate but I persevered following what the law says. I went through various courts. Some of the court rendered wrong decisions against me. I went to the appellant court to get justice,a�? he said.
On what he hopes to achieve within the limited time in the Senate, the lawmaker said: “I promised that I would help deepen democracy in this country and the rule of law. A country that does not respect the letters of its constitution could be regarded as a banana republic and we cannot afford that.
“It is only when we begin to do things the way the law provides that we can hope to run a responsible government that will benefit the common man in this country. We believe that everything goes than everything can go. I have also come to contribute robustly to legislations that would lead to good governance and a united country,” he stated.
On the 2014 National Conference Report, Umeh said that one of his major reasons for coming to the Senate was to champion the discussions on the adoption of the document which he believes has solutions to the nation’s problems.
“The report of the conference is a landmark. That report is a good direction for Nigeria and it is because of that conference that I decided to run for Senate seat. I decided to come to the Senate to await discussions on those recommendations of that report, but my legal processes delayed my resumption.
“There has been a lot of misconception about restructuring to mean disintegrating Nigeria. Nobody is talking about disintegration when you restructure. Those who are holding that view want the status-quo to remain and there is no way it will remain, if we what this country to remain united.
“The only way to save the doomsday is to implement the 2014 National Conference. I will wait to see when the report will be debated in the Senate and I will make my contributions irrespective of what any view anybody holds,a�? he said.
By Ignatius Okorocha