Senate president Lawan. Photo/facebook/omoagege1
• To Assess Recent Security Situation Across Country
• Political Considerations May Temper Senators’ Protest Against Insecurity – Lawmaker
The Senate would this week meet to review the six-week ultimatum it gave President Muhammadu Buhari to end insecurity or be impeached.
The upper legislative chamber billed to resume on Tuesday from the end of session recess, will sit as a whole to consider the security situation in the country since it gave the ultimatum and come up with further decisions.
Some Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) legislators in the senate had staged a walkout after Senate President Ahmad Lawan dismissed a motion by the minority leader, Philip Aduda. The lawmakers left the chamber after Lawan did not allow Aduda to present his motion on insecurity. The opposition senators, numbering over 20, later gave the president a six-week ultimatum to tackle insecurity in the country or risk being impeached.
Speaking after the walkout, the minority leader said he wanted to give President Muhammadu Buhari an ultimatum to address insecurity in the country or face impeachment proceedings.
Chairman of the Senate’s Committee on Aviation, Senator Smart Adeyemi, representing Kogi West, who is also an APC member, later told journalists that the move for impeachment was a collective decision of the entire Senate. “It is a collective decision. Perhaps, only about four senators have reservation about it.”
The move for the impeachment of the president came on the heels of violent attacks across the country and security threats in the Federal Capital Territory. While some Nigerians hailed the move by the opposition senators, others said they waited for too long to act and only issued the impeachment threat because the criminals have infiltrated Abuja.
Speaking with The Guardian yesterday, in a telephone interview on what to expect from the Senate on the impeachment plan as it reconvenes, Adeyemi disclosed that agitations that culminated in the impeachment threat were borne out of patriotism and not out of any partisan sentiments.
“Accordingly, and in the same spirit, senators will review the entire security situation and take a position,” the lawmaker stated.
He said that the Senate as a body would look at all security developments and situations between the time the ultimatum was given and now, to take a very serious objective stance.
The lawmaker, however, observed that there has been a renewed drive against insecurity in recent times.
Adeyemi, who said he was not in a position to decide for the Senate on the next line of action, expressed the hope that the new drive against will continue.
However, it was learnt that political considerations might mar the unity with which Senators protested against the deplorable security situation before the Senate went on recess in July.
A lawmaker disclosed that some members of the Senate leadership in the ruling party are seeking to weaken the inter-party solidarity and unity among lawmakers on the issue of insecurity.
“It is open for all to see. Just some days ago, they were already commending the President for what they called a job well done on security. How do you think a person who has already commended the presidency will support any sanction against him?” he queried.
Just last week, the President of the Senate, Senator Ahmad Lawan, commended the Armed Forces for the sustained fight against terrorists, banditry and kidnapping in the last month.
Lawan, in a speech delivered to declare open a National Policy Dialogue on Corruption and Insecurity in Nigeria, praised the military for flushing and neutralising insurgents and terrorists in States such as Kaduna, Niger and Zamfara, in particular.
“Only recently, the president gave a marching order to the armed forces to extinguish bandits, kidnappers and other criminal agents against the state and her citizens, by December 2022. This administration is committed to achieving this set target,” he had said.
Also last week, the Senate leadership blamed the high rate of unemployment and insecurity in the country on the absence of proper training and skills in Nigerian universities.
It lamented that most of those who graduate from the universities are not properly trained for the jobs and as such end up losing the jobs even if they have them.
Chief Whip of the Senate, Orji Uzor Kalu, speaking at the commencement of the Graduate Skills Training (GST) programme of an Abuja-based technology centre, TerraSkills, called on Nigerians not to blame President Muhammadu Buhari or the National Assembly over the high unemployment rate, stating that many graduates are not groomed properly.
The Centre is reputed for training over 4,000 Nigerian graduates in different areas of specialisation for employment in the country’s public and private sectors.
Kalu, who was there along with the deputy Whip of the Senate, Saabi Abdullahi, alleged that many lecturers don’t know what they were teaching in the tertiary institutions, which is making the country produce graduates that are unproductive.