“We can’t be induced to screen ex-Service Chiefs” – Senate

The Senate yesterday ruled out the possibility of being influenced to screen and confirm the immediate-past Service Chiefs as non-career ambassadors.

President Muhammadu Buhari had last week forwarded the names of the immediate past Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Abayomi Olonisakin (rtd); Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai (rtd); Chief of Naval Staff, Vice-Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas (rtd) and Chief of Air Staff, Air-Marshal Sadique Abubakar (rtd), to the Senate for confirmation as envoys.

Although, the pan-Yoruba socio-cultural group, Afenifere, has said that the Senate is in order to confirm the appointment of the new service chiefs, it, however, described as abnormal the request of the president for the confirmation of the erstwhile service chiefs as non-career ambassadors.

But the former Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Timi Frank, had in a statement yesterday alleged a plot to induce each senator with $100,000 to ensure that the nominees were confirmed.

But Senate’s spokesman, Senator Ajibola Basiru, in an interview with newsmen, dismissed the allegation. He expressed optimism that the Senate will consider the nominees on merit without any interference. He, however, urged his colleagues and the public not to take such an allegation seriously, especially coming from Frank.

Also in his statement, Frank asked the Senate not to confirm the nomination of the erstwhile service chiefs.
Frank added that if the Senate considers the nominees, it would go against its many resolutions in the past, including a vote of no confidence on the former army chiefs over incompetence.

According to him, the confirmation of the retired officers would amount to both chambers of the National Assembly returning to their vomit.

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