After persistent clamour by Nigerians, Buhari appointed new service chiefs to take over from the ex-service chiefs to be able to bring in their security expertise towards combating terrorism, especially in the North-East part of the nation.
This was done, without getting the constitutional endorsement of the National Assembly. However, human rights lawyers including Femi Falana had said the President lacked powers to appoint the new generals without the constitutional endorsement of the National Assembly.
On Tuesday, the Senate received a request from the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), for the confirmation of the newly appointed service chiefs.
“The appointees for confirmation are: Maj. Gen. Lucky Eluonye Onyenuchea lrabor – Chief of Defence Staff; Maj. Gen. Ibrahim Attahiru – Chief of Army Staff; Rear Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo – Chief of Naval Staff; and Air Vice Marshal Isiaka O. Amao – Chief of Air staff.
“They are to replace the former Chief of Defence Staff, General Abayomi Olonisakin; Chief of Army Staff, Lt-Gen. Tukur Buratai; Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok Ekwe Ibas; and Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar.”
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The request which was contained in a letter dated 27th January, 2021, was read by the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, during plenary on Tuesday.
According to a statement by Lawan’s aide, Ezrel Tabiowo, the letter from the President, read in parts, “In compliance with the provisions of Section 18 (1) of the Armed Forces Act. Cap A20 Laws the Federation of Nigeria 2004, I hereby forward for confirmation by the Senate, the appointment of the under listed officer as the Chief of Defence Staff and Services Chiefs of the Armed forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.