Senate President Bukola Saraki, has commended the leadership and members of the national assembly for their reaction to the theft of the mace during plenary on Wednesday.
Ovie Omo-Agege, suspended senator from Delta, had stormed the red chamber with unidentified persons who made away with the mace.
The house had produced a spare mace and continued with the sitting. Omo-Agege was later arrested by the police.
Reacting to the development via a statement issue by Yusu Olaniyonu, his spokesman, Saraki lauded the “swift reaction” by the senate leadership and members of the house of representatives in demonstrating their solidarity with the red chamber.
He said the move by the lower house has sent a “strong signal that enemies of democracy and those who want to undermine the legislature will be resisted by all parliamentarians.”
Speaking from Washington where he is attending the spring meeting of the World Bank/International Monetary Fund (IMF), Saraki commended the red chamber for “disregarding their unreasonable and shameful action”.
“I have just been informed that some hoodlums invaded the Senate chambers, forcefully taken away the mace and assaulted some of our Sergeant-at-arms on chamber duties,” he said.
“I am delighted that the senate stood up to them by disregarding their unreasonable and shameful action and went on with the day’s proceedings as slated in the Order Paper.
“My commendation goes to my deputy, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, other members of the leadership, my colleagues, the leadership and members of the house of representives for standing in defence of democracy, parliamentary sanctity and constitutionalism.
“With the way the senate has defied those seeking to undermine it, we have sent out a strong signal that we are always ready to defend our constitutional mandate and nothing will deter us from this.
“I associate myself with the comments of the deputy senate president that we are ready to get to the roots of this assault on democracy and ensure that those who are responsible, no matter how remote, will be brought to justice.”