Last week, the House of Representatives Minority Caucus, led by Ndudi Elumelu, could not hide its feelings over the Lagos Judicial Panel of Inquiry report which indicted the Nigerian Army in the shooting of #ENDSARS protesters at the Lekki Toll gate in Lagos last year.
We tracked two other stories from the parliament for your attention.
Anger over #ENDSARS leaked report
The House of Representatives Minority Caucus had, after a review of the Lagos panel’s leaked report on November 18, insisted that the Federal Government had questions to answer.
“Our Caucus is however shocked that the administration can lie in a matter that has to do with the gruesome killing of citizens, particularly our youths, and even attempt to provide official cover to the culprits,” a statement issued by the Caucus read, among others.
The rage of the House minority caucus is well-understood, given that, as an opposition force, it has to seen to be holding the ruling party accountable.
While it amplifies the feelings of many Nigerians, therefore, the caucus’ position can best be described as riding the wave of popular sentiments.
The Doris Okuwobi-led panel’s leaked report looks to generate more crisis than it was intended to resolve, and this is largely so because critics, both within and outside government, have pointed to certain inconsistencies in the document.
It would be interesting, therefore, to see how the promised government white paper on the panel’s report would resolve the views of contending forces.
What is certain for sure is that the physical attacks on star witnesses have placed the Lagos State government and the federal government in very compromised positions to deny their complicity in what is turning out to be a huge dent on the integrity of the ruling party.
NASS MEMORY LANE
“This place is called the hallowed chambers for a reason. This is not a market place. You have to respect the sponsor of that Bill (House Leader, Alhassan Ado Doguwa, who presented a bill for an Act to establish the Nigeria Police Academy as a Degree Awarding Institution for second reading) or any Bill for that matter.
“This place is like a courtroom, if not even more important. But you see how quiet courtrooms are. That is how this place should be. We should take note.”
Answer: See end of post
Two other stories
Kalu’s admonition for Ndigbo
The Senate Chief Whip, Orji Uzor Kalu, on November 19 charged the people of the South-East to work with President Muhammadu Buhari in order to attract federal projects to the region.
Kanu, who made the call in a chat with journalists, said: “I encourage the Igbos to work with President Buhari to find a way to make amends and remove sentiments and work with the President so that in the remaining two years he can do more for us before he leaves office.”
Kalu’s submission confirms the love-hate relationship that exists between the President and the people of the South-East. It is easy to see through his pains, engendered largely by strong perceptions of injustice which has left the citizens of that region feeling robbed in the Nigerian project.
But is Kalu not engaging in a dialogue of the deaf as the bigger issue seems to be how to convince the political leadership, led by Buhari, to entrench justice, equity and fairness without having to turn the President into a demi-god that must be worshipped before he dishes favours to people who are meant to equal partners in a federation?
Kalu must be honest enough to confront this salient issue.
Ndume’s ISWAP alert
The Chairman of Senate Committee on Army, Ali Ndume, on November 14 raised the alarm that the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) insurgents were regrouping in the Lake Chad area of Borno State to launch a fresh attack.
Ndume, who disclosed this at a media briefing in Abuja, said: “They (ISWAP terrorists) are also regrouping around Borno North, that’s Lake Chad axis, planning to launch a fresh attack. The military is aware and the Nigerian Air Force is conducting surveillance in the area right now.”
Ndume’s warning is one that cannot be dismissed by a wave of the hand, as it falls squarely within his oversight functions. More importantly, he is an indigene of Borno which conveys an undeniable advantage in the area of intelligence gathering.
However, a tougher challenge is to win over his colleagues in the pursuit of a unified stand on getting the Nigerian government to shift military strategy from mere containment to outright offensive against terrorists and bandits.
Answer: Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila
Gbajabiamila stated this on March 16 while cautioning members of the House of Representatives having group discussions during plenary.
Gbajabiamila, who is the Speaker of the House, represents Surulere 1 Federal Constituency in Lagos State.
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