By Festus Ahon
OBARISI Ovie Omo-Agege returned from the United States of America in 2001 with a strong passion to serve his fatherland, leaving his lofty legal practice and took a shot at the Federal House of Representatives to represent the Ughelli North/Ughelli South and Udu Federal Constituency, Delta State under the platform of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP with uncertainty.
He went around the political gladiators then in the Constituency to intimate them of his desire to contest the 2003 National Assembly election. He was not too known then so he would always introduce himself as the son of a former Chief Judge of Delta State, Justice James Omo-Agege, now of blessed memory; a household name in Urhobo nation and Delta State.
His ambition to serve his people for which he returned from America, was truncated after he was unable to pick the PDP’s ticket to fly the party’s flag at the general election.
Undeterred by his unsuccessful outing in the election, Obarisi Ovie Omo-Agege joined other party members to work for the reelection of the then Governor, Chief James Onanefe Ibori for a second term in office.
After his reelection, Chief James Onanefe Ibori picked him (Obarisi Ovie Omo-Agege) as his Executive Assistant. A position he held until he was appointed as Commissioner for Special Duties (Government House) in 2005.
Still burning with the desire to serve his people, Obarisi Ovie Omo-Agege again dropped his hat in the ring to contest the 2007 Delta State gubernatorial election and went round the state to campaign after floating the Ovie Omo-Agege Foundation.
He ran with former Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan, the present Governor of the State, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, late Senator Pius Ewherido, Chief Emmanuel Aguariavwodo and a host of others under the umbrella of the PDP.
But again, he could not secure the PDP Governorship ticket. After the primary election, he was appointed by Chief James Onanefe Ibori as Secretary to the State Government, SSG, a position he held till the end of the administration in May 2007. He joined other party members to work for the victory of Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan who won the PDP gubernatorial primary.
In November 2010, Obarisi Ovie Omo-Agege again indicated interest to contest the Governorship election after the Court of Appeal, Benin City, Edo State nullified the election of former Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan. This time, he pitched his tent with the Republican Party of Nigeria, RPN, whose platform he used to contest the Governorship rerun in February 2011.
The outcome of the election is better on your lips as former Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan was returned after beating all his opponents.
Still determined to serve, Obarisi Ovie Omo-Agege contested the 2011 Governorship election after winning the ticket of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN now All Progressives Congress, APC. He was also unsuccessful in that election.
After the election, he returned to the PDP and contested the Delta Central senatorial bye-election after the demise of Senator Pius Ewherido in 2013. He lost the primary election to Senator Emmanuel Aguariavwodo.
In 2015, Obarisi Ovie Omo-Agege joined the gubernatorial election where he contested the PDP ticket with incumbent Governor Ifeanyi Okowa and a host of others and lost.
Propelled by his passion for the service of his people, he immediately joined the Labour Party under whose platform he contested the 2015 National Assembly election but lost at the field to the candidate of the PDP, Senator Ighoyota Amori.
Not satisfied with the outcome of the election, he approached the Election Petition Tribunal and was declared by the Court of Appeal, Benin City as the winner of the election and was subsequently sworn in.
In 2019, he sought reelection back into the Senate this time under the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC. He won both the primary and general election without much stress due to his overwhelming performance in his first term in the Red Chamber.
After his reelection, he contested for the position of the Deputy Senate President, DSP on the floor of the Senate with Senator Ike Ekweremadu where he had a landslide victory.
Today, he is being addressed as His Excellency, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege, (Obarisi of Urhoboland), the Deputy Senate President.
Obarisi Ovie Omo-Agege has used this position to the benefits of Nigerians, Deltans and the Urhobos in particular. He has attracted Federal presence to Delta Senatorial District and Delta State as a whole.
He was very instrumental to the Federal University of Petroleum Resources, Effurun, FUPRE, Delta State establishment bill. He recently attracted a Federal Polytechnic to Orogun and also brought Defence Space School, Orogun, Ughelli North Local Government Area, Delta State amongst others.
In his deliberate effort to attack development projects to his constituency, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege influenced the ongoing dualization of the Sapele/Agbor Road. He has influenced the provision of Transformers for so many towns and villages in the Delta Central Senatorial District.
He has influenced several political and civil service appointments for a good number of Deltans. A fit no Senator from Delta Central has achieved from the inception of the senatorial district. He also carried out many empowerment programs where youths and women were empowered.
He is now one of the prides of the Urhobo nation, Delta State and Nigeria.