Senate confirms former service chiefs as non-career ambassador-designates

The Senate on Tuesday considered and confirmed five presidential nominees for the position of non-career ambassador-designate in a controversial twist.

Four of the nominees are immediate past service chiefs, General Abayomi G. Olonisakin (retd), Ekiti; Lt. General Tukur Yusuf  Burutai (retd), Borno; Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas (retd), Cross River; Air Marshal, Sadique Baba Abubakar (retd), and Air Vice-Marshal Muhammed S. Usman (retd), Kano.

Minority leader of the Senate, Enyinnaya Abaribe had demanded that the chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, Senator Mohammed Bulkachuwa, provide the Senate with reports of petitions against the nominees which according to him bordered on the integrity of the Senate.

Bulkachuwa reported that there was a petition against the nominees but did not mention its content.

Abaribe was countered by the President of the Senate, Ahmed Lawan, who said the petition which argued that the Senate would be upholding double standard by confirming the same officers whose resignation it had called for severally.

He said the ambassadorial assignments are different from that of military chiefs tasked with national security.

Details later…



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