By Deji Elumoye
Senate Minority Leader, Senator Eyinnaya Abaribe, has vowed to continue to fight for the rights of the citizenry through necessary legislative interventions, as well as taking definite stand on critical national issues.
Abaribe, who spoke in Abuja yesterday while playing host to poets from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, who authored his biography titled: ‘Ala Asaala, Silhouette of Abaribe’, said he has been fighting injustice against the people since his time as the deputy governor of Abia State in 1999.
The fourth time Senator stated that his political life since the advent of the Fourth Republic has been full of coincidences in the cause of fighting for what is right.
He explained that his travails as deputy governor of Abia State in 2000 made the late Oba of Lagos, Oba Adeyinka Oyekan, to invite him to Lagos and gave him the title of Alasela, meaning successful person, “which was coined by my people from Igboland to ‘Ala Asaala’, meaning enlargement of coast.”
Abaribe added that “since then, it has been successful endeavours for me, and enlargement of coast politically, having been in the Senate since 2007 till date, and even as a Minority Leader, paving way for me to speak to Nigerians on critical issues and joining other stakeholders in putting things alright.”
According to him, the literary work used in depicting his little contributions to the Nigerian society by African Spontanists Movement (ASM) of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, will further spur him to do more for the advancement of his society and humanity generally .
“The message you the poets from University of Nigeria, Nsukka, convey to me through this literary work is profound, and will serve as required tonic for me in the service for humanity and God,” he assured them.
The leader of the literary team, Uchechukwu Chigbu, while presenting the book, said it is a poetic presentation of Abaribe’s service to humanity over the years.
According to him, the literary work is not a biography which may end up in the archive, but a poetry which will outlive the writers and the person honoured with it.
“The poetry encompasses perspective of service-driven politics, liberation and struggle for just cause in the society, which will generate reactions and discussions generation after generation,” he said.
The Director of Institute of African Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Professor Florence Orabueze, in her Foreword on the book, said: “Ala Asaala is a true art for saying what it says it is. It is epic, awakening, engaging, revealing, vibrating, agonising and infusing of tunes, truths, thoughts and emotions that stay with the reader long after sounds die away.”