Senate rejects two ambassador-nominees, clears 45

The Senate during a plenary

• Condemns terror attack on British parliament
• SGF wants meeting with senators re-scheduled

The Senate yesterday rejected nomination of an 82-year-old ambassador-nominee from Imo State and another one from Ondo State. It however, confirmed 45 others as non-career ambassadors forwarded to it by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The rejection of the Imo nominee, Justice Sylvanus Adiewere Nsofor, followed the adoption of the report of the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs. According to the report, the responses of the 82-year-old to the issues raised were devoid of details and mostly satirical.

The committee’s report on the Ondo nominee, Jacob Igbekele Daodu, said he did not in any way respond to issues raised at the screening with satisfactory answers apart from alleged negative security report against him by the DSS.

In his remarks, Senate President, Bukola Saraki urged the ambassadors-designate to be of good behaviour in any country they are posted. Saraki urged the Federal Government to pay the outstanding salaries owed the mission workers.

The senators also expressed shock and sadness over the terrorist attack on the British Parliament, in Westminster, London on Wednesday. Adopting a motion sponsored by the Senate Leader, Ahmed Lawan, the Senate resolved to be in solidarity with the British Parliament.

Lawan said a terrorist attack on any one country should be seen as an attack on all those who cherish freedom from oppression and the right to be free. Senator Mohammed Hassan (PDP-Yobe), who seconded the motion said: “This building (the Senate) is vulnerable to such attack.”

In his remarks, Senate President Bukola Saraki described the attack as sad and horrific. And barely twenty fours after the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir David Lawal announced that because he had sued the Senate and as such would not honour its invitation, the SGF yesterday sent a second letter citing the reason of busy official schedule for his absence from the meeting.

The Senate Committee on Mounting Humanitarian Crisis in the North East, headed by Senator Shehu Sani had invited Babachir to appear before it to provide explanations on the alleged mismanagement of funds voted for the Presidential Initiative on North East (PINE).

The Senate, acting on an interim report submitted by Sani’s committee had indicted Babachir and asked that he should resign immediately, a position, which President Muhammadu Buhari opposed.

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