A Lagos-based politician, Arinola Oloko, who was addressed as a thug by Oluremi Tinubu, a senator representing Lagos Central, has explained what transpired between her and the senator.
The politicians had an altercation on Wednesday at Marriott hotel in Lagos, the venue of the public hearing on constitutional review for South-West.
In a video that went viral, Mrs Tinubu was heard addressing the woman as a “thug, adding that she should “shut up.”
“I am not a thug, you cannot call me a thug,” Mrs Oloko responded in the video.
Mrs Tinubu chairs the Senate Committee on review of the 1999 Constitution in the South-West.
As part of the review exercise, a public hearing on the constitution review was to hold across the six geopolitical zones in the country on May 26 and 27.
The incident between the senator and Lagos politician caused commotion at the venue, with people calling on the senator to apologise for addressing the woman as a thug.
“I will not apologise for what I said. I saw it and I said it,” Mrs Tinubu said.
VIDEO: Remi Tinubu calls woman 'thug' at constitution review hearing pic.twitter.com/mhKSIL4bQA
— TheCable (@thecableng) May 26, 2021
In an interview with Punch Newspaper, Mrs Oloko explained what led to the altercation between her and the senator.
“We were at the venue, standing in a queue, only for us to get to a point and they said registration had closed. They did not say from the beginning that they had a certain number that they were restricting the hearing to. If so, they should have made us register online, so that we would have known that on getting to the centre we wouldn’t bother trying to enter.”
Mrs Oloko said although many people were denied entry into the hall, access was given to senators, governors, local government chairmen, and government officials who came after them.
She did this act led to a protest by people on the queue over unfair treatment. Mrs Oloko and few others were the most vocal on the queue complaining bitterly of bad treatment.
“I don’t know what happened but the Senator came out and started saying, ‘Call that woman! Come here!’
“By default, I responded and went to her (Mrs Tinubu). I told her my name and told her I am in her constituency and that she is my senator and that we had been in the queue like forever. Senator Oluremi Tinubu is my senator and I respect her as my senator. I have tremendous respect for authority,” she said.
Mrs Oloko said she recounted what had happened on the queue to the senator, hoping that she would intervene.
“I thought she would say oh, this is wrong and all of that. But she said, ‘Shut up! Shut up! Call the security to take this thug away.’ At that point, I told her, Ma, I am not a thug; I don’t look like a thug. I am not being violent and I don’t look a criminal. That’s the qualification of a thug. That was all that happened, ” she explained.
Mrs Oloko added that her presence at the public hearing was to present a paper on the constitutional review.
“I was expecting a proper hearing for the Senate constitutional review. I was genuinely interested in the hearing,” she said.
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