Former Deputy President of the Nigerian Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, has congratulated the Speaker of the Delta State House of Assembly and national Deputy Chairman of the Conference of Speakers of state legislatures of Nigeria, Rt Hon Sheriff Oborevwori on
his awards as Lawmaker of the year and Independent Nigerian Parliamentarian of the year.

Speaking at the Award ceremony organised by the Independent Newspapers, the former Deputy Senate President said the awards to the Speaker of the Delta State House of Assembly and National Deputy Chairman of the Conference of Speakers of state legislatures of Nigeria, Rt Hon Oborevwori did not come to him as a surprise, saying he deserved the awards.

Ekweremadu said: “I know a good lawmaker, when I see one . This is my 18 years in the Senate and if I see a good presiding officer, I know because I was a presiding officer for 12 years. If I see a good presiding officer, I will also know and the Speaker of Delta State House of Assembly is one of the best I have seen.

“He is not just a Speaker but a Leader and he has inspired alot of people. I have watched him closely and when I heard that he is being honoured by the Independent Newspaper, I promised him that I will attend because this is a well deserved honour from a reputable organisation and I believe in the business of lawmaking. He will be inspired more with these awards received by him in this ceremony today and I join others in congratulating him for these awards.

“The Speaker has been identified also by the media and he is someone that should be motivated by this honour. He has also assisted my friend, the Governor of Delta State, Senator Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa in so many ways to ensure that there is good running in the administration of Delta State in ensuring that appropriate laws are made to help the Government succeed.

“So, he is part of the Government of Delta State and also part of the Government in this country. If there is no peace in Delta State, it means there will be no peace in the entire country. He has helped to maintain it not just the working relationship with the Governor but also the peaceful co-existence among the people of Delta State.

“He is somebody that has made friends across the country not just in South South region. I am from South East, he is one of my best friends. He is somebody that needs to be encouraged so that at the appropriate time, he will play a greater role not just for the people of his Constituency but the entire Delta State. I am looking forward to that”.

While receiving the awards, Rt Hon Oborevwori said ; ” This is an unexpected honour. I am elated, not just elated I am highly honoured with these Awards from the Independent Newspapers and I want to give God all the praises. These Awards are dedicated to God Almighty and to my very dear and dependable Colleagues. They are here in their numbers and this is a very great honour for me and I want to say that as from today, I will be addressing them as my bosses. If not for their support and show of love, I don’t think, these Awards would have been possible”.

“They have been very supportive and we are doing extremely well in the House. And I know that these Awards will spur us to do more by coming out with people-oriented laws for the people that elected us. We cannot afford to disappoint them and it is my promise to do more for Deltans and also thank His Excellency, Senator Dr Ifeanyi Okowa for his support to the Legislature. I must commend our very senior colleague in this business of law making, Senator Ike Ekweremadu for attending this ceremony and I am humbled with his encouraging words”.

Speaking at the award ceremony, the Managing Director of Independent Newspaper, Mr Steve Omanufeme, said: “As part of our thought leadership initiative and commitment to the development of our great nation, Independent Newspaper Limited, in association with African Consolidated Analytical Limited (ACAL), decided to provide a platform to recognize, reward and celebrate lawmakers who have excelled in lawmaking and in their chosen intervention projects aimed at touching lives and changing society positively.

“It is for the above reasons that the Nigerian Parliamentary Excellence Awards is conceived.

“Over the years, many of us have struggled to understand the value of the legislature in a constitutional democracy. We are often quick to point out the many drawbacks of representative democracy, including the fact that elected officials are always not bound by law to fulfill promises made before their elections and that they are often seen to be promoting their own self-interests above the common good once elected.

“However, there are positives and they are many. The legislature in our country is one arm of the government that has preserved our fledgeling democracy, especially in the dark days of the third term agenda.

“Our past and current National and State Assemblies have indeed put much into the development of our great nation in terms of bills sponsored and passed into law and the impact of those laws on the development of our nation both at the national and state levels.

“This is in addition to various constituency projects commissioned and executed, which have positively impacted the lives of people in their respective constituencies.

“All these have, oftentimes, passed unacknowledged or unappreciated by many Nigerians. The vision, courage, passion, and determination some Nigerian lawmakers have demonstrated make the Nigerian Parliamentary Excellence Awards all the more compelling.

“Coming up with the list of deserving awardees for this maiden edition was no easy task given the large number of lawmakers and the incredible performances of all our legislatures.

“Tonight, we are here to celebrate these eminent leaders in the Federal and state legislatures that have touched lives and impacted society positively. It is my greatest honour to welcome you all to the 2021 Independent Nigerian Parliamentary Excellence Awards.”