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Senate ignores petitions, complaints, confirms ex-service chiefs as ambassadors

The Nigerian Senate has confirmed former service chiefs nominated as non-career ambassadors by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Former Chief of Defence Staff, Gabriel Olonisakin; former Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai; former Chief of Air Staff, Ibok Ibas; and former Chief of Naval Staff, Abubakar Sadique, were all confirmed during plenary on Tuesday.

The confirmation comes barely five days after they were screened by the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs and three weeks after they were nominated by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The confirmation was sequel to the adoption of the report of the committee which was presented by the chairman, Muhammed Bulkachuwa.

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He further said the committee received two petitions against the appointment and confirmation of the nominees but the petitions were dismissed by the committee. He, however, did not explain why the petitions were dismissed or whether the petitioners were invited to explain their stance.

But the Senate Minority Leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe (PDP, Abia), questioned why the petitions were dismissed.

He said the Senate on three occasions, took resolutions that the nominees be removed as service chiefs and for them to be brought back to be confirmed for another position demands explanation.

“The nomination cannot be nullified because we said they should be changed,” Ahmad Lawan, Senate President said and ruled Abaribe, who attempted to make further comments, out of order.

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The Senate, thereafter, resolved into the committee of the whole to confirm the nominees despite echos of “nays” from many senators.

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