National Assembly confirms new service chiefs

   …Senate President recommends postings to neighbouring countries

The new service chiefs nominated by President Muhammadu Buhari have been confirmed by the House of Representatives.

They are Maj. Gen. Lucky Eluonye Onyenuchea lrabor – Chief of Defence Staff; Maj. Gen. Ibrahim Attahiru – Chief of Army Staff; Rear Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo – Chief of Naval Staff; and Air Vice Marshal Isiaka O. Amao – Chief of Air staff.

They are to replace the former Chief of Defence Staff, General Abayomi Olonisakin; Chief of Army Staff, Lt-Gen. Tukur Buratai; Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok Ekwe Ibas; and Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar.

The new service chiefs were confirmed after a unanimous adoption of the report by the ad hoc committee chaired by Babajimi Benson to screen the nominees and report back.

While the House screened the nominees on Wednesday, the Senate had separately screened them on Thursday.

Meanwhile, Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, has urged President Buhari to post former service chiefs to neighbouring countries as ambassadors.

Lawan stated this after the Senate at plenary confirmed the ex-service chiefs as ambassadors-designate.

The former service chiefs confirmed are Gen. Abayomi Olonisakin (retd), Ekiti; Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai (retd), Borno; Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas (retd), Cross River; Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar (retd), Bauchi; and  Air Vice Marshal Muhammad Usman (retd), Kano.

The Senate President advised the executive to deploy them to countries where their experiences as former military officers would be required.

Lawan said, “Our appeal to the executive is to make sure that we utilise their experiences as military men to the best, because we should be able to post them to countries where they can be much more useful in their engagements as ambassadors.

“Without prejudice to what the executive will do, the new ambassadors-designate should be posted to neighbouring countries where we need to fight the Boko Haram insurgency and banditry.

“Because of their experience in the field, they should be able to interact very closely and sufficiently to advise and create the atmosphere for working together, for partnership and cooperation between Nigeria and those countries.”

He pointed out that the Senate resolution for the removal of the former chiefs was not related to Buhari’s request for the red chamber to confirm them as ambassadors-designate


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