By Samuel Oyadongha
YENAGOA—Deputy Senate President, Dr Ike Ekweremadu, weekend, distanced himself from an alleged statement making the rounds that he called for a military coup in the country.
Ekweremadu made the clarification at a dinner held in his honour in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State and other parliamentarians from African countries by Governor Seriake Dickson of the state.
He maintained that his comments on the floor of the Senate were misconstrued, insisting that he will never make derogatory statements against the Nigerian military, which according to him, remained one of the best fighting forces in the continent.
Ekweremadu said: “Before I close, let me just tell you one unfortunate incident that happened last week. We had one of our colleagues from Kogi who was hosting a constituency briefing and empowerment programme. He alleged that the government sponsored thugs to come and chase away people and disrupt the programme and distroy equipment he bought for his people.
“We condemned such acts, especially where in a particular case, the property of a parliamentarian was destroyed. We condemned a case whereby parliamentarians were stopped from holding meetings and where a parliamentarian was stopped from coming to a state where he was governor for eight years.
“We warned that it was this kind of reckless abuse of power and impunity that scuttled our democracy earlier, especially in the first republic and I cautioned that politicians should not take things for granted. Of course, some people took it out of context and said I was calling for a military coup. I never called for a military coup. I never said the military was planning any coup.”