During the inaugural Senator Ekpe Moriri Lamai Memorial Lecture, organized by Senator E.A Lamai Foundation, Adam Oshiomhole, the former Governor of Edo State, shed light on his political differences with Owelle Rochas Okorocha, the former Governor of Imo State. Oshiomhole clarified that their disagreements were solely rooted in matters of lawfulness and held no personal animosity. Furthermore, Oshiomhole addressed Victor Oyofo, a former Senate Whip, who insinuated that former governors enter the Senate to flaunt opulence.
The event took an intriguing turn when Okorocha, one of the panelists, humorously labeled Oshiomhole as one of Nigeria's problems and expressed gratitude that Oshiomhole would be joining the Senate to address these issues.
Responding with sharp wit, Oshiomhole remarked, "My brother Rochas Okorocha said I am the problem of Nigeria and he is happy that I am going to the Senate. I will accept the latter part. He is happy for me, so he intends to organize a dinner in my honor. There will also be a dinner to mark his departure. As he goes, I am coming in."
Elaborating further, Oshiomhole explained, "When people mention a small man like me, it is because big people believe that their stature exempts them from obeying the law when a person of smaller stature presides. And when they claim we are short, I struggle to identify what I lack. There is nothing that others possess that I don't. When they talk about economies of scale, they should also consider the dis-economies of scale."
Directing his words to Okorocha, Oshiomhole addressed their misunderstanding, saying, "So, my dear brother, you know what caused our disagreement? You have been my good friend until tomorrow. The crux of the matter, for me, lies in the meaningfulness of laws when even the powerful are obligated to obey them. Therefore, I appreciate and respect you, but it is essential that you learn to adhere to the law."
Injecting a touch of humor, he added, "Please don't judge me by my size, especially when I have sworn an oath to defend the Constitution. As we step out, I will embrace you, and I must insist that you organize a dinner to celebrate my entry into the Senate."
Oshiomhole also addressed Oyofo's remarks concerning former governors indulging in luxurious lifestyles within the Senate. He refuted this notion by stating, "Nigeria was already on a perilous path when we witnessed the prospect of having a life president. During President Obasanjo's attempt to amend the constitution, which should have been the beginning and end of it, no guns were fired. The power of AIT and other media outlets, covering the session live, deserves credit for thwarting that third term bid."
Directly confronting Oyofo, Oshiomhole continued, "Regarding the other matter, my dear big brother, my pension amounts to N1,250,000. Therefore, when you mention opulence and corruption, it is not confined to the government alone. For every corrupt government official, there are three, four, or even five businessmen who are even more corrupt. They are the custodians of public officers' wealth."
Emphasizing that his life after leaving the labor movement was devoid of luxury, Oshiomhole stated, "So, if my brother departed the oil industry with wealth and entered the Senate to indulge in luxury, why should you be envious of me, who left the labor movement? I never received a single kobo as gratuity, and I relinquished my official car, adhering to the Nigeria Labor Congress
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