The Nigerian Senate on Tuesday confirmed the appointment of the immediate past service chiefs as non-career ambassadors.
The confirmation of the former service chiefs followed the senate’s consideration of the report of its Committee on Foreign Affairs.
The former service chiefs are Abayomi Olonisakin (Ekiti); Tukur Buratai (Borno); Ibok- Ette Ibas (Cross River); Sadique Abubakar (Bauchi). Muhammad Usman (Kano) was also confirmed as a non-career ambassador.
The country’s President Muhammadu Buhari had appointed them as non-career ambassadors days after they resigned from their previous positions.
While many Nigerians had expressed resentment with the appointment, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, Mohammed Bulkachuwa said the nominees met the requirements expected of them.
“At the end of the screening exercise; their nominations are in line with section 171 of the 1999 constitution.”
“That the nominees have been cleared by the Department of State Services (DSS). That the nominees have presented their code of conduct slips.
“That the nominees rose to a point of their career that has made them eminently qualified. The committee is satisfied with their character and performance,” the Bauchi senator said.
But efforts by the Senate Minority Leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe to draw the attention of the senate to a petition against the ex-service chiefs were rebuffed.
“That petition borders on the integrity of the senate; it said that we called for their removal, how then do we confirm them for another appointment,” Abaribe said.
The Senate President, Ahmad Lawan opposed the minority leader saying the petition lacked merit.
“The nomination cannot be nullified because we asked them to be changed,” Lawan said.
By Abel Ejikeme