By Gabriel Enogholase
BENIN — A former Commissioner for Arts and Culture and later Transport in the Adams Oshiomhole administration in Edo State, Mr. Orobosa Omo-Ojo, has described the decision by members of Edo State House of Assembly to vote against the granting autonomy to state Houses of Assembly, local government councils and the judiciary as a sad commentary in the political history of Edo people.
Omo-Ojo spoke, Tuesday, in Benin City, while reacting to media reports that the state House of Assembly had rejected the autonomy bill after succumbing to the dictates of the leaders of the All Progressives Congress, APC, and executive arm of government in the state.
He said: “Edo people are too intelligent and wise to be treated the way the legislature did without any consultation.
“Edo State did not vote against the autonomy of local government councils or the state Houses of Assembly or the judiciary, rather, it is the 24 members of the state House of Assembly who have decided to be on the wrong side of history. Edo people are very enlightened politically, in commerce and culturally aware. Those members of the state House of Assembly have decided to write their names in black.”
“So it shall remain for our children that will read our historical books, for historians that will do research that once upon a time that the National Assembly in their wisdom thought otherwise that needed to address the long cries of Nigerians to give political independence to the state Houses of Assembly, local governments and judiciary so that they can have the leverage to defend the sanctity of their position.
“But it is very sad that the class of 2015 to 2018 members the House decided to reject the autonomy bill. That clearly defines how abysmal a section of a people that were elected to defend the interest of the people should descend so low. Even when the opportunity came for them to seek for freedom, they chose to remain in slavery.
“It is just like a King that you have served so long saying, call your leader, I will give you freedom tomorrow so that you can fend for yourself, but you fell on knees begging to remain in perpetual slavery.”
He lamented that the present crops of lawmakers were not in the class of late Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Chief Anthony Enahoro who in their youthful ages stood their ground to confront the colonial masters to fight for the independence of Nigeria.