The Chamber of the Nigerian Senate
Major events at Senate last week
It was yet another busy week at the Senate as lawmakers tackled issues mostly on national security.
One key event, however, was the declaration of the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, as an enemy of democracy.
Below are major events from the Senate last week:
– President Muhammadu Buhari wrote a letter to the Senate seeking confirmation of Festus Keyamo and six others as chairman and members of Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation.
Mr Buhari’s letter was read by the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, on Tuesday.
He listed the nominees as:
Olabode Mustapha (Chairman, Ogun State)
Garba Buba (Member, Bauchi State)
Bello Garba (Member, Sokoto State)
Joseph Okalogu (Member, Enugu State)
Mustapha Mudashiru (Member, Kwara State)
Festus Keyamo (Member, Delta)
Adewale Adeleke (Member, Ondo State)
– The Senate summoned all service chiefs; the Director General of the State Security Service, Lawan Daura; the Comptroller General of Customs, Hameed Ali; and the National security adviser, Babagana Monguno over the illegal possession of firearms by non-authorised Nigerians.
This invitation was sequel to deliberations on a motion titled, “proliferation of dangerous firearms in Nigeria” sponsored by Suleiman Hunkuyi (APC, Kaduna North).
– A senator, Shehu Sani (APC, Kaduna Central) accused Nigerian politicians of being behind the proliferation of illegal firearms around the nation and the violence.
– On Tuesday, the Senate deliberated on the need to check intrusive and unsolicited adverts by telecom companies and service providers. This followed a motion moved by Yahaya Abdullahi (APC, Kebbi North).
It also resolved to urge the Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) to ensure that any person or entity found to have abused regulatory guidelines is sanctioned, in accordance with the extant rules and regulations.
– A move to review the hike in excise tariff imposed on local distillers of beverages was made by the Senate.
– The Senate also urged the federal government to address all cases of xenophobic treatment allegedly suffered by Nigerian nationals in Gambia and other African countries.
This decision was sequel to a motion by David Umaru (Niger-APC) on the status of bilateral cooperation agreement between Nigeria and Gambia and alleged ill-treatment of Nigerian judicial officers seconded to Gambia under the agreement.
– The Senate equally lamented the rising cases of road accidents across the country and suggested ways the carnages could be curbed.
A senator, Sabi Abdullahi (APC, Niger) called for the prosecution of reckless drivers who cause road accidents.
– Senate President, Bukola Saraki, on Tuesday inaugurated a joint Senate and House of Representatives ad-hoc committee to investigate the April 18 invasion of the Senate chamber leading to the theft of its mace.
– After snubbing the Senate for the third time on Wednesday, the Senate declared Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, an ‘enemy of democracy,’ who is not fit to hold public office in Nigeria and abroad.
The decision of the Senate was announced by the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, after a closed-door session on Wednesday.
The Senate had entered the closed-door session following Mr Idris’ refusal to honour an invitation to appear before the Senate a third time.
– Senator Sani appealed to his colleagues to partially lift a Senate ban on consideration of executive appointments.
The partial lifting is necessary to confirm the appointment of members of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) board members, he said while raising a point of order on Wednesday.
– The Senate resolved to set up an ad-hoc committee to deliberate on President Muhammadu Buhari’s request on bond issuance to civil servants as well as contractors.
The President had in March written to the Senate seeking the establishment of a promissory note programme and a bond issuance to resettle inherited local debts and contractual obligations.
– The Divisional Police Officer in the National Assembly, Sulu-Gambari Abdul, on Wednesday blamed the invasion of the Senate and removal of the mace by hoodlums on ‘internal conspiracy’.
Mr Abdul stated this during an investigative hearing into the incident by a committee investigating the incident.
According to him, what happened at the National Assembly was “an act of internal conspiracy among some security agencies and some lawmakers”.
The Senate then adjourned plenary till Tuesday, May 15.