By Festus Ahon, ASABA
A valedictory session was Tuesday held in honour of the late Majority Leader of the Delta State House of Assembly, Hon Tim Kome Owhefere amidst tears, wailings and eulogies.
The valedictory session which was held at the State Assembly complex in Asaba, attracted lawmakers from other parts of the country, including the National Chairman of Conference Speakers of State Legislatures in Nigeria, Rt Hon Abubakar Suleiman, who was represented by the Speaker of the Edo State House of Assembly, Rt Hon Marcus Onobun, Deputy Speaker of the Edo State House of Assembly, Majority Leader of Edo State House of Assembly, Chief Whip of Edo State House of Assembly. Also in attendance were the Delta State political class (elected and appointed).
Speaking during the session, Speaker of the Delta State House of Assembly, Rt Hon Sheriff Oborevwori, said: “Wednesday 27th of January, 2021 began like every other day of the week for all of us until the unthinkable, the unimaginable happened on that dreadful Wednesday night. Alas, our Majority leader, my Majority leader, the amiable Majority leader of this vibrant Delta State House of Assembly passed away. May his gentle soul rest in perfect peace, Amen.
“It beats my imagination that I will be speaking about Hon Tim Kome Owhefere in the past tense. Let me crave your kind indulgence to talk about Hon Tim Kome Owhefere the way I see and know him. Hon Owhefere struck me as someone born hungry for success and had it all carefully mapped out. He went to the school when his mates were in school and graduated with HND, Publishing. Being a man with eyes fixed on higher academic echelons, he again went back to school and qualified as a lawyer”.
Oborevwori who is the Deputy National Chairman of the Conference of Speakers of State Legislatures, said: “Owhefere tested the trouble waters of life early as a businessman before venturing into politics and eventually became a member of the Delta State House of Assembly in June 2007 till date. As a lawmaker and member representing Isoko North State Constituency, he devoted his energy for the service of his people.
“He served his people until his last day on earth. I do know that his people equally loved him dearly, hence, his constituents rewarded him not once, not twice but four consecutive times with electoral votes cum victories. I could safely sum up these victories as a resounding vote of confidence on him by his people.
“Hon Owhefere exhibited wit and verve in the discharge of his legislative duties. He carved a niche for himself as a legislator par excellence early in 2007 and thus was appointed Chief Whip by the Fourth Assembly of the House. Hon Tim Owhefere was a stickler for sound parliamentary rules, practice and procedures. His knack for details is second to none. He was the seasoning that added flavour to our debates in plenary, Committees’ hearings and at Committee of the Whole House. He was indeed a great team player in the House.
“I have lost a dear friend and a confidant in the passing of Hon Tim Kome Owhefere KSC, Esq. Without exaggerating, he was a true definition of loyalty, a partner in progress and a legislative walking colossus in the House. We will surely miss his nuanced debates on the floor of the House. My dear Majority leader, your sudden departure has tipped the balance in our work.
“Dear Hon Owhefere, you have fought a good fight, you have finished your course, you have kept the faith and the sun has set at noon – Is now HAKUNA MATATA for you – No Trouble, No Worries”.
National Chairman of the Conference of Speakers of State Legislatures and Speaker of Bauchi State House of Assembly, Rt Hon Abubakar Suleiman, said: “Dear colleagues, I know this is an uncertain and emotionally very difficult time for you and indeed for the bereaved family. The grief, especially of this magnitude, is never easy. I urge you to take solace in the fact that death is inevitable and every soul shall taste death”.
While sympathizing with the Government and people of Delta State, he said; “Mr Speaker, Hon Colleagues, I stand before you today, on behalf of the 36 Honourable Speakers and 998 Honourable members of the State Houses of Assembly in Nigeria, to convey our heartfelt and sincerest condolences to you and Delta State Government over the painful loss of our dear Colleague, Late Hon. Tim Kome Owhefere, Esq. We also extend our heartfelt condolences to the Executive Governor of Delta State, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa over the demise of his dear father, Sir Arthur Okorie Okowa.
In their separate remarks, members of the Delta State House of Assembly described the death as painful and sad. They paid glowing tributes to him and said he was Parliamentarian par excellence, lamenting that they would miss him and his wealth of experience in the legislative business.