The country’s security chiefs, led by the chief of defense staff, General. Christopher Musa declined the House of Representatives’ request to appear before it on Thursday, November 16, to participate in sectoral discussion on matters of national significance.
The House was supposed to start a sectoral debate on matters about the nation’s security situation today (Thursday).
Those invited include The Chief of Defence Staff, General. Christopher Musa, Chief of Army Staff, Gen. Taoreed Lagbaja, Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Hassan Abubakar, Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla, and the Inspector General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun.
Although the security chiefs sent their representatives, the House rejected them, citing the need for an in-person meeting due to the nature of the matters at hand.
In response to a point of constitutional order, the House’s deputy speaker, Hon. Benjamin Kalu, stated that the House is empowered under sections 88 and 89 to ask anyone to provide commentary on matters of national concern.
He noted that when invited, such persons ought to honor such invitation by sending their Chief Executives to the parliament because the parliament is a grade one institution.
He added that it has long been the custom of the House to reject representation from those called to brief parliament and respond to their inquiries.
Nevertheless, he made a motion requesting that the House put a halt to the sector-specific discussion involving the security chiefs until their Chief Executives could brief the House and address their queries.
The position of the Deputy Speaker was unanimously supported by members who voted to suspend the debate.
The debate with the Security Chiefs has been rescheduled for Tuesday, November 21, 2023. The Speaker of the House, Hon. Abbas Tajudeen, asked the delegation to report back to their superiors that the House would not accept representation.
The House had earlier halted all other business to allow for a vigorous discussion with the Security Chiefs, but the debate’s suspension terminated the day’s plenary.