Sen. Stephen Adi Odey in Perspective; The Gains of Putting a Round Peg in a Round Hole

The age-long idiomatic expression – putting a round peg in a round hole, connotes giving the right people with the right qualifications, talents, skills, experiences, and exposures the chance or opportunity to function in positions and situations they are best suited for. In the context of this article, it simply means putting the right people in the right positions of authority.

Nigeria as a country is replete with instances in which less qualified people and neophytes are chosen over or preferred to people with the right qualification, training, skills, and experience. Appointments are simply made based on connections or ‘who you know at the top’. This is a situation where nepotism, tribalism, ethnicity, favouritism, political affiliation, and ‘godfatherism syndrome’ hold sway. But this is not the case with Senator Stephen Adi Odey (Ph.D.), the Senator representing the good people of Cross River North.

As a Distinguished Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Stephen Odey has proven himself as a competent, ingenious, and sagacious lawmaker beyond every reasonable doubt. He has never once left anyone in doubt that he is the right man with the right qualification, competence, and experience to take up the job at the hallowed chamber. Odey hit the ground running almost immediately after his inauguration. Recall that the first bill he sponsored was during his second plenary after the inauguration.

In less than five months after his inauguration as a Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Odey has sponsored two vital people-oriented bills – a bill for the establishment of Institute of Communication Technology, Ogoja, which has passed second reading; and Compulsory Free Universal Education Act CAP C52 LFN 2004 (Amendment), which has successfully undergone first reading. He also moved a motion to support a Bill for an Act to amend the Court of Appeal Act 2013 by increasing the number of Justices in the Court of Appeal from 90 to 110 and for other related matters.

In the same vein, Senator Stephen Odey has moved and supported several motions on issues of national concerns, including National Security. These include the motion on ‘Safe School Child Initiative Nigeria’ and the motion for the establishment of a University Teaching Hospital for the Federal University of Lafia. As part of his legislative functions, he also facilitated the approval and release of N30, 000 Covid-19 survival funds to 384 Constituents and personally purchased 300 free JAMB forms for constituents across the five local governments in Cross River North Senatorial District.

It is worthy to mention that since his assumption of office, Sen. Stephen Odey has actively participated in all legislative activities both at plenary sessions and at the committee level. Given his pedigree as an erudite scholar, a legal luminary, and seasoned technocrat, the Senate President graciously approved his appointment as a member of nine strategic Senate Committees, including the committee on judiciary and legal matters and that of Anti-corruption and financial crime.

Sen. Stephen Odey Wants Zenith, Access Banks Branches in Yala LGA

In addition to the foregoing, Senator Odey seeks to boost the economic inclusiveness of the people of his immediate Local Government by writing to commercial banks to site their branches in Yala Local Government Area, among which are Zenith, Access, and UNICAL MF banks respectively, with the latter replying in the affirmative with conditions which Senator Odey has graciously accepted to fulfill.

It is worthy to note that aside from those in the public domain, Distinguished Senator Stephen Adi Odey, Ph.D has facilitated employment for constituents that contacted him and he has also privately given personal assistance to many others. His office is a beehive of activities for such constituents, whom he has graciously assisted to put smiles on their faces.

Suffice it to state that Senator Odey’s staggering and intimidating academic qualification and sterling achievements in public service over the years rightly positioned him for the job of a lawmaker at the upper legislative chamber.

He is one of the few Nigerian Senators with a Doctorate degree, which is the highest academic qualification anywhere in the world. In addition to this, he is a trained lawyer with a master’s degree and a Ph.D in view in law, which is his second Ph.D degree.

Governor of Cross River State, His Excellency, Senator (Prof.) Ben Ayade with Dr. Stephen Odey

The Distinguished Senator also served as a legislative aide to Senator (Prof.) Ben Ayade, the incumbent Governor of Cross River State, in the 7th senate. He is therefore highly endowed with both the theoretical and practical knowledge of lawmaking, which has obviously stood him out among his peers.

Let us not forget the fact that Senator Odey achieved all these amidst political war threatening his office. This political war is considered as the most protracted, brutal, and most Machiavelli of all political fights in Cross River State, yet Senator Odey has remained undistracted, unruffled, undaunted and resilient to effectively discharge his legislative responsibilities.
Surprisingly, he has been able to record these unprecedented achievements within the shortest period ever by any Senator from the constituency. What a paradox!

Currently, the erudite Senator representing Cross River North has scheduled a ‘Thank you’ visit to his constituents across the five Local Government Areas to demonstrate his unflinching love and appreciation for his people. This is indeed a demonstration of the true spirit of humility from someone that is well-bred, well-taught, and highly educated.

We would not also forget the insight and unremitting of the digital Governor of Cross River State, His Excellency, Senator (Prof.) Ben Ayade, KSJI for discovering a quintessential gentleman like Senator Odey and placing him on the right pedestal to serve his people. With this singular act, the governor has demonstrated an uncommon act of mentorship to the young talented ones who are ready to work. Your Excellency, we are most grateful to you!

Senator Stephen Adi Odey is indeed a round peg in a round hole in regards to the business of lawmaking and in the discharge of other legislative duties. He is undoubtedly our only duly elected and serving Senator representing the good people of Cross River North.

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