The kidnap of the students of Government Science Secondary School, Kagara, Niger State, has pushed some senators into uncontrollable anger against the Federal Government.
Senators Mohammed Enagi (APC-Niger South), Sani Musa (APC-Niger East), and Aliu Sabi Aliu (APC-Niger North) described as unacceptable, the worsening state of insecurity in Niger State and Nigeria in general.
In a brief debate on a motion sponsored by Musa, the lawmakers expressed worry that the state had become unsafe for education, agriculture, and other socio-economic engagements.
Musa, in defending his motion, informed his colleagues that the number of students in that school was more than 1,000, adding that the actual number of those kidnapped was yet to be known.
But a spokesman for Niger State Government, Muhammad Sani Idris, said that about 650 students were in the school when it was attacked.
Before the debate began, the Senate leadership had warned lawmakers against resorting to politics and political gimmicks during deliberations.
Consequently, all lawmakers who participated in the debate were from the APC as none from the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) spoke.
Use of hostile words and languages got to its peak when Enagi lamented that none of the resolutions that had been adopted by the Senate and sent to President Muhammadu Buhari was executed.
According to him, the Federal Government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari was grossly incompetent.
The visibly angry lawmaker further noted that the government had been evasive on issues that ought to be given attention.
Enagi observed that it was unfortunate that the Federal Government was too incompetent to handle in such a way as to guarantee full employment for the nation’s teeming youths.
Enagi suggested the amendment of laws that would allow governors who are chief security officers of their respective states to take charge, insisting that the government at the centre has failed woefully.
He added that citizens might need to be allowed to bear arms through the amendment of laws if the situation persists.
“I’m sorry to say this, the government is grossly incompetent in the handling of security challenges in this country,” Enagi said.
“In my own zone, few days ago, terrorists went to two local governments, but fortunately, my people were able to repel and killed nine of them and in short everybody that is here has a story to tell about security challenges in this country.
“What else are we supposed to do that we are not doing? Are supposed to amend laws in this country to give every citizen the opportunity to carry arms? What else are supposed to do?
“Shouldn’t we amend Nigeria Constitution to give more powers to the governors who are the Chief Security Officers of their various states because; our government at the centre is so incompetent in the handling of security issues”, Enagi queried.
According to the senator, the situation with the parents of the kidnapped students is best imagined “if it is one of us that his or her daughter and son were kidnapped. I expect everyone in government to think like that.”
He lamented that “For over two years, our police and other security agents have been trying and for over two years, we discuss security challenges that we are facing, yet nothing has improved.
“We have a lot of youths who are undergraduates that are not employed or under-employed. What are we doing, the government is busy distributing palliative instead of creating economic activities that will engage the unemployed that will generate employment; that will improve the welfare of our people.
“Mr. President, my highly respected distinguished colleagues, the situation in this country is disheartening and something needs to be done”, Enagi submitted.
The President of the Senate, Dr Ahmad Lawan, halted the debate after Enagi declared that the kidnap of the students was unfortunate.
Lawan said the security agencies had challenges with personnel and funds.
“Abduction of students from school happen in the northern part of Nigeria,” the Senate president said, adding that ”With incidences like this, parents would be scared to take their wards to school and the efforts of the past as present leaders at providing education would be defeated.”
Also, Aliu, expressed dissatisfaction that the Federal Government has been unable to ensure the release of some 57 travellers kidnapped last Sunday within Niger State.
He called for more decisive action from security agencies to get the kidnapped persons released.
Sabi cautioned Federal Government to take extraordinary measures to halt the spate of insecurity which he feared could spread to the Federal Capital Territory.
The Senate urged the President to as a matter of urgency declare the state of emergency on insecurity in Nigeria.
It also urged Buhari to consider and implement “the recommendations of the Senate Ad-Hoc Committee on Nigeria’s Security Challenges dated March 17, 2020, and Senate Resolutions therefrom, as a holistic response to the mounting security challenges across the country”
The Senate sought a massive and combined operation to identify and destroy the camps and hideouts of these criminals wherever they may be situated.
Customs Generates N466.1bn Revenue In First Quarter
The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has generated N466.1 billion revenue in the first quarter of 2021.
The statistics obtained by The Tide source from the office of the Public Relations Officer of the service, Mr Joseph Attah yesterday, showed that the revenue was generated from January to March.
The data indicated that the NCS realised the highest revenue in March with N169.4 billion followed by January with N157.6 billion while the sum of N138.9 billion was generated in February.
The document showed that customs realised the highest revenue of N216.9 billion within the period under review from import duty.
According to the statistics, the import duty is followed by customs VAT which is N105.2 billion and non-federation accounts levies of about N55.5 billion.
The document showed that N50.8 billion was generated from federation account levies while N34.5 billion was gotten from excise duty as well as N2.8 billion from fees.
Similarly, the statistics revealed that within the period under review, the service made a seizure of different contraband goods valued at N1,996,145,258.
The document indicated that the customs confiscated 37,206 bags of imported rice from January to March.
Senate Receives Buhari’s Request To Confirm Garba As FCT CJ
Senate, yesterday at plenary received a request from President Muhammadu Buhari, to confirm the appointment of Acting Chief Judge of the FCT High Court, Hon. Justice Salisu Garba Abdullahi, as substantive Chief Judge.
Buhari’s request is contained in a letter read by President of Senate , Ahmad Lawan.
Buhari, in the letter said his request was made pursuant to Section 256 subsection 1 of the 1999 Constitution as amended.
The letter reads in part: “Request for the confirmation of the appointment of Hon. Justice Salisu Garba Abdullahi as the Chief Judge for the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory Abuja.
“Pursuant to Section 256(1) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).
“I hereby request for the Senate’s confirmation of the appointment of Hon. Justice Salisu Garba Abdullahi, the acting Chief Judge of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory Abuja, as substantive Chief Judge of the Court.
“I trust that the Senate will favorably confirm Hon. Justice Salisu Abdullahi as substantive Chief Judge of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, in the usual expeditious manner.”
The Chief Justice of Nigeria, Tanko Muhammad, inaugurated Garba as the acting Chief Judge of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
Garba hails from Malumfashi Local Government Area of Katsina State.
He was called to the bar in 1984, and he completed his National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) scheme in 1985.
Garba was appointed as a magistrate of the FCT High Court in 1989.
In 1997, he became the chief registrar of the FCT High Court, and was appointed a judge of the FCT High Court in 1998.
…To Investigate CCT Chairman For Alleged Assault On Security Guard
The Senate yesterday mandated its standing Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions to investigate the alleged assault on a security guard, Clement Sargwak.
The assault was allegedly committed by the Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT), Danladi Umar, at Banex Plaza, Wuse II, Abuja.
Sagwak, had petitioned the Senate through his Sen. Istifanus Gyang (Plateau North).
President of the Senate Ahmed Lawan asked the Committee on Ethics and privileges headed by Sen. Ayo Akinyelure to investigate the matter and report back in four weeks.
The Senate investigation was premised on the fact that the petitioner was yet to seek redress in Court.
Earlier presenting the petition at plenary, Gyang said the petitioner was seeking for justice, given the assault on him by the Tribunal Judge, while carrying out his duty.
Gyang said the petitioner alleged Umar assaulted him, asked him to kneel down and also slapped him.
In another development, the Senate has mandated its Committee on Special Duties to liaise with the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to supply relief materials to Olamaboro communities in Kogi, which were affected by rainstorm.
The resolution was sequel to a Point of Order raised by Sen. Isah Jibrin (APC-Kogi) during Tuesday’s plenary.
The motion was titled: “Urgent need for rehabilitation of communities affected by rainstorm in Olamaboro Local Government Area (LGA) of Kogi”.
Speaking on the motion, Jibrin said over 200 residential buildings were destroyed across the communities in the LGA by rainstorm on April 9.
“Apart from destruction of residential buildings, the devastating rainstorm also ravaged crops, farmlands, schools, worship houses, clinics and businesses in several communities in the LGA,” he said.
Contributing, Sen. Yakubu Oseni (APC-Kogi) urged the Federal Government to provide succor to the affected communities through relief materials.
The Senate thereafter, mandated its Committee on Poverty Alleviation and Social Investment Programme (SIP), to liaise with the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development to provide minimal seed capitals for the victims in the affected communities.
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