The invasion of the hallowed chamber of the Senate by hoodlums who carted away the mace and other paraphernalia of authority is a violation of the sanctity of the Senate and constitutes a threat to our democracy, the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) has said.
A statement signed by the president of the Congress, Comrade Ayuba Wabba, and made available to Premium Times on Friday, stated that the “stolen mace represents a throw-back to those dark old days we are better off without. It is a sad commentary on the quality of representation.
“We, therefore, condemn it in its entirety. We similarly invite all who love Nigeria to rise and condemn this crude and sordid act or conduct”, the statement highlighted.
The statement said the Senate, from the days of the Greeks and Romans from whom the world borrowed this concept of democracy, had always been a sacred arena for the nobility.
According to the statement, “as a house packed full of representatives from different parts of the Republic, there are bound to be differences of opinion, tactics, strategy and even conflicts but these are expected to be resolved in a dignified manner befitting of men and women of character and learning!”
In its reaction, the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) in a statement signed by its National Secretary, Shuaibu Leman, said that most politicians have forgotten the implications of such disruptions.
“We consider the invasion and disruption of the proceedings of the Senate by thugs today as inimical to democratic norms and values.
“Paralysing parliamentary sessions and seizing of the mace which is a symbol of office or authority is a favourite pastime of most aggrieved members of the National and State Assemblies, for whatever reason.
“We note with regret that most politicians have lost the sensibility to understand the cost implication of such disruptions, especially as loss of time through pandemonium translates into substantial loss of public money,” the union stated.