Nigeria’s Service chiefs on Friday shunned a security parley convened by the leadership of the House of Representatives to discuss the prevailing security situation in the country.
The quartet of the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Gabriel Olonisakin; Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Yusuf Buratai; Chief of Naval Staff, Ibok-Ete Ejwe Ibas; and the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadiq Abubakar failed to turn up for the meeting scheduled to hold at the office of the Speaker of the House, Femi Gbajabiamila but instead send their representatives.
Only the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, the Comptroller General, Nigeria Immigration Service, Babandede Mohammed and the Director Department of State Services (DSS), Ibrahim Bichi were present for the meeting.
A visible angry Gbajabiamila expressed his disappointment at the absence of the four service chiefs. He said the Chiefs have shown disregard for the National Assembly more especially at a time the nation is battling serious security challenges. Gbajabiamila vowed to see president Muhammadu Buhari on the issue and rescheduled the meeting for Monday at 10:00am.
“I am almost embarrassed to tell you the truth. There was no call placed to my office to explain why, just sending accountants and representatives.
“We will postpone this meeting till Monday morning, I will personally see the president myself because we are supposed to work as one.
“I know some of these chiefs were somewhere yesterday night, I’m aware of that. It shows the disdain for this institution.
“I don’t know of any parliament in the world where the head of parliament will call the service chiefs on a nagging problem on how to resolve it and you won’t show up” he said.
On his part, the Deputy Speaker, Idris Wase, said he felt insulted by the actions of the service chiefs.
He said, “I am insulted and feel insulted that this institution will make a proclamation, ‘come let us discuss our problems’ and the people in charge are not here.
“If the presiding officer will make a call and those responsible do not come, what will now become of the standing committees.
“As I was coming in, I saw one of the service chiefs going to Zuba, we crossed our way. There has to be a reprimand and we need to let the president know of that”.