Senate yesterday in Abuja approved the appointments of the new Chief of Defence Staff, Maj-Gen. Abayomi Gabriel Olonishakin and other service chiefs.
Their confirmation followed about five hours screening by the Committee of the Whole of the Upper Chamber of National Assembly.
The other service chiefs are Maj.- Gen. Tukur Yusufu Buratai, Chief of Army Staff; Rear Admiral Ibok-Ete Ekwe Ibas, Chief of Naval Staff, and Air Vice Marshal Sadique Baba Abubakar as the Chief Air Staff, respectively.
While reading the executive communication by President Muhammadu Buhari on the service chiefs, Senate Leader, Ali Ndume, said their screening and confirmation is in accordance with the Section 18 (1) of the Armed Forces Act, CAP A 20 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.
Senate President Abubakar Bukola Saraki, who congratulated the new service chiefs on their appointments, said they were based on merit and charged them to tackle insecurity and oil theft in the country.
“On behalf of my colleagues, I hereby congratulate the service chiefs. It’s clear that their appointment is based on merit and their presence before us today (yesterday) as we can all see, is coming at a very crucial time with a lot of challenges particularly insurgency in the North-East and some of the other security issues.
“For example, the issue of oil theft (was raised) when they came before us. We hope that during the period of time, their performance will take off the responsibility required.
“We need to observe also that they were all born in the 60s, so there are a lot of responsibilities as a new generation to provide new direction and new leadership to our armed forces.
“We are all keen to restore the image and reputation of the Armed Forces. I believe that their confirmation is the beginning of their journey to restore the glory of the Armed Forces in our great nation,” Saraki stressed.
He particularly emphasised on the need for the new service chiefs to restore the integrity of the Armed Forces.
According to him, “the issue of procurement procedure in the Armed Forces is an area that they must work hard to root out corruption”.
Also yesterday, a 19-man Ad-hoc committee in the House of Representatives screened the Service Chiefs and is expected to submit its report within seven days.
Nigerian Pilot recalls that on July 13, Buhari appointed the service chiefs alongside Air Vice Marshal Monday Riku Morgan, Chief of Defence Intelligence and Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno as the National Security Adviser, NSA.
Chairman of the House Ad-hoc Committee is Hon. Garba Datti while members are Hon. Femi Fakeye, Hon. Segun Odebunmi, Hon. Kolawole Faleke, Hon. Philip Shuaibu, Hon, Sam Ikoh, Hon. Blessing Nsiegbe, Hon. Goni Bukar, Hon. Danjuma Shiddi, Hon. Aishatu Dukku and Hon. Kingsley Ebenyi.
Others are Hon. Onyenwuchi Ezenwa, Hon. Nkiru Onyejeocha, Hon. Ahmed Idris Wase, Hon. T.J. Yusuf, Hon. Funke Adedoyin, Hon. Kabiru Achida Marafa, Hon. Nasiru Ali Ahmed and Hon. Jagaba Adams Jagaba.