By Musa Adamu
The upper chamber of the National Assembly yesterday held a valedictory session for the late Senator Benjamin Uwajumogu.
The Imo State born Senator, representing Imo North, who was eulogised by his colleagues, had died on the 18th of December, 2019.
The senators who spoke at the valedictory session at the red chamber, extressed grief over the demise of the Uwajumogu, who was a former speaker of Imo State House of Assembly, when Rochas Okorocha was the governor of the state.
Speaking, the Senate Minority Leader, Sen. Enyinnaya Abaribe, said, “sudden death is one of the things that tells us how much mortal we are. Every man’s life end in death but the most important is how man pass through life with details.”
Abaribe noted that Uwajumogu affected life and was a big man with a big heart, adding that he was generous and accomodating.
He said: “We will miss him. Not only his family, but Imo state and the Senate will miss him. It is how you live your life that you will make your mark. Benji had made his mark.”
On his part, the Deputy President of the Senate, Ovie Omo-Agege, who described the late Uwajumogu as his compatriot in rebellion, added that “I will chose to celebrate Big Ben. We had almost identical trajectory. We both came into the Senate after much litigations. We bonded together, we did everything together. There is no way the history of Senator Ovie Omo-Agege will be written without the name of Ben Uwajumogu. He was my compatriot in rebellion.
“When I was threatened with suspension, Senator Uwajumogu, then Senate Leader were among those that defended me. He survived a very rugged political terrain in the Southeast.”
The former Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu said, “as the remains of Senator Uwajumogu lies outside there, some of our compatriots are already struggling to take over his seat.”
He noted that in the 17 years in the Senate as a Senator, he had cause to pay tribute to so many colleagues that died.
He listed about 14 senators that have died in his 17 years as a Senator in the red chamber.
Senator Robert Ajayi Boroffice, described the late lawmaker as habinger of good news for the political firmament of this country.
Minority Whip, Senator Philip Aduda (FCT), said that this life is vanity, adding that “life in itself is meaningless but if you plan for it, it becomes meaningful.”
Senator Rochas Okorocha (Imo West), described Uwajumogu as a great leader, great politician, lover of people, one that lived his life building bridges.
“Ben was the Speaker for four years in my rescue mission administration in Imo State.
This is a wake up call for all of us alive today that to every beginning there must be an end.
In death, there is no political party. It is a wakeup call to think deeply that it is not how far but how well you have lived with people,” he said.
He added that no one knows when he will die, which makes it inexplicable part of life.
Sen. Francis Onyewuchi (Imo East), said, “he was a stabilizing factor in the Imo State House of Assembly in the administration of Owelle Rochas Okorocha. He has served the good people of Imo State in good stead.”
In his remarks, the President of the Senate, who presided over the plenary assured that they (senate) will participate in the burial rites, adding that he will lead the delegation to ensure that they give him that respect.
Lawan added said the National Assembly will remain united and focused, ensuring that the citizens get the best deal.
“We will continue to work and ensure security and also ensure that Nigerians live where they want to leave. Regionalism will not take Nigerians anywhere. We need unity and unite.”
The Senate, however, offered prayers, observed a minutes silence, send condolence message, send delagation to be led by the Senate President before proceeding on a procession to paid the last respect to the late lawmaker.