Tinubu seeks security chiefs’ confirmation, ACF counsels President

President Bola Tinubu on Thursday officially sent a letter to the House of Representatives requesting the confirmation of the newly appointed Service Chiefs.

The request was contained in a letter read on the floor of the House by Speaker Tajudeen Abbas during Thursday’s plenary.

The President asked the lawmakers to consider the speedy confirmation of the Service Chiefs under extant laws.

This was as the Arewa Consultative Forum advised the President to negotiate with bandits terrorising the North-West region.

The service chiefs to be confirmed are the Chief of Defence Staff; Maj Gen C.G Musa, Chief of Army Staff, Maj. T. A Lagbaja, Chief of Naval Staff, Rear Admiral E. Ogalla and AVM Abubakar, the Chief of Air Staff.

Tinubu said the request was in compliance with the provisions of section 18(1) of the Armed Forces Act. Cap A20 Laws the Federation of Nigeria 2004.

The PUNCH reports that the security chiefs were appointed on June 19 while the National Assembly was in recess.

The letter read in part, “In compliance with the provisions of section 18(1) of the Armed Forces Act. CAP A20 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria,2004, I am pleased to present, for confirmation by the Senate, the four nominees listed below as Chief of Defence Staff and Service Chiefs for the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“The House of Representatives is invited to note the current security situation of our country which requires concerted efforts of both the legislature and the executive to ensure a well-protected Nation.”

The letter added, “Maj Gen C.G Musa, Chief of Defence Staff; Maj T. A Lagbaja, Chief of Army Staff; Rear Admiral E. A Ogalla Chief of Naval Staff and AVM H.B Abubakar, Chief of Air Staff.

“This informed the review of our defence architecture and appointment of new leaders to work in synergy with one another to achieve the level of optimal performance expected of the military.

“While I hope that the request will receive the expeditious consideration and confirmation of the House of Representatives, Please accept, Rt Hon. Speaker, the assurances of my highest consideration.”

Meanwhile, the Arewa Consultative Forum on Thursday said it would support any approach to end banditry in parts of the north, including negotiations with the hoodlums.

However, the pan-Northern group insisted that the Federal Government should make the ground rules before the proposed negotiations.

This, the forum Secretary-General, Malam Murtala Aliyu, said was to ensure that the negotiations did not fail like previous ones.

He argued that using military force would result in “collateral damage” and, therefore, should be considered as the last resort.

The group endorsed suggestions by a former Zamfara State governor, Ahmad Yerima that the governors in the North-West should dialogue with the bandits terrorising the region.

“The best way to go about handling the issue of bandits is to introduce dialogue first. But as I said, if that fails, then the government will go all out to eliminate them,” Yerima had said after a courtesy visit to the President on Monday.

The ACF said it welcomed any move that would resolve the insecurity in the region and other parts of the country.

Aliyu stated, “ACF will welcome anyway that will resolve the issue. We know the non-kinetic and kinetic approach is also important. But before the government goes into negotiations with the bandits, they must set the ground rules for such because there have been previous negotiations that didn’t materialise. It didn’t come out well.

“So, before engaging them this time, the government must make sure that all the parameters for negotiations are there. What we are saying is that any approach that will solve the problem including negotiations if possible, should be pursued.’’

No amnesty – Zamfara

But the Zamfara State Government vowed to wage a serious war against bandits, stressing that there would be no amnesty for them

Addressing journalists in his office on Tuesday, the Secretary to the State Government, Abubakar Nakwada said the state government would wage a war against them until they were eliminated in the state.

Nakwada said the Administration of Governor Dauda Lawal had no plan to initiate any reconciliation or have a discussion with the bandits.

He maintained that the state government would go after them wherever they might be hiding to flush them out of the state to restore peace.

He said, “We are not talking about amnesty. We will not reconcile with them and we are ready to face them squarely”.

In another development, Senate President Godswill Akpabio was on Thursday absent from the plenary sitting for a ‘very important’ meeting with the President at the Villa.

The plenary session was presided over by Deputy Senate President, Jibrin Barau, who informed his colleagues of the reason for Akpabio’s absence.

Barau said, “Let me inform you that the Senate President could not attend today’s proceedings because he has a very important meeting at the Villa.”

Our correspondent also observed that when it was time to present his motion, former Edo state governor, Senator Adams Oshiomole, also took permission to be out of the plenary and could not present his motion.

Although the deputy Senate President didn’t state why Akpabio rushed to the Presidential Villa, our correspondent gathered that it was not unconnected with the crisis brewing between the National Assembly and the National Chairman of the All Progressive Congress, Senator Adamu Abdullahi.

 Adamu had claimed that he was not informed about the nominations for the National Assembly principal officers announced by both the Senate President and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Tajudeen Abbas.

The national chairman, who spoke during a meeting with the Progressive Governors Forum led by Governor Hope Uzodimma of Imo State on Tuesday, said he was not aware of the development.

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Author: Maxwell Dudu

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