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Cross River Senator-elect cries out over inability to take seat

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Jarigbe Agom

Senator-elect for Cross River North Senatorial District, Mr. Agom Jarigbe, has cried out over alleged delay by Senate President, Ahmed Lawan to swear him into office.

Recall that the Supreme Court, on February 25, 2021, declared Jarigbe as the duly-elected Senator for the senatorial district in place of Senator Stephen Odey, who is still holding on to the seat.

Jarigbe, who is a serving member of the House of Representatives, representing Ogoja/Yala Federal Constituency, blamed his ordeal on antics of some unidentified National Assembly staffers, who stopped his file from getting to the Senate President to adhere to the apex court’s decision.

Jarigbe said Odey lacked the right to attend Senate’s proceedings, due to the Supreme Court’s order.

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Expressing optimism that he will be sworn in by the Senate President this week, he disclosed that his file was recovered and delivered to the office of the Senate President on Wednesday last week, after the Clerk to the National Assembly (CNA), Amos Ojo, waded into the matter.

He said: “The Supreme Court delivered that judgment on February 25, 2021 and it took us weeks to get a copy of the judgment signed by the Justice that read the lead judgment.

“We have communicated that judgment to the National Assembly through our lawyers, but it took sometime for the file to reach the table of the Senate President. The file only got to his table on Wednesday…

“I have a Certificate of Return, which was issued to me, based on THE Appeal Court’s judgement, which actually invalidated his Certificate of Return. That was transmitted to the National Assembly…

“I know the Senate President will conform to the Supreme Court’s judgment. Since the Certificate of Return has been issued to me by INEC, it means INEC has implemented the judgment of both the Appeal and Supreme Courts. Therefore, I am supposed to be sworn-in as Senator….

“Even if I am not sworn-in immediately because of certain bureaucratic protocols, Stephen Odey should be stopped from desecrating the parliament. I know and trust that the Senate leadership will do the needful…”

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