The Senate on Monday screened the new service chiefs appointed by President Goodluck Jonathan in an unprecedented move since Nigeria’s return to civil rule in 1999, Channels TV reports.
The president had last week forwarded the names of the service chiefs to the senate for confirmation.
They are Chief of Defence staff, Air Marshall Alex Badeh, Chief of Army Staff, Major General Kenneth Minimah, Chief of Naval Staff, Rear Admiral Usman Jibrin and Chief of Air Staff, Air Vice Marshall Adesola Amosu.
According to the Chairman, Senate Committee on Defense, Senator George Sekibo, said previous administrations had flouted Section 217 to 219 of the 1999 constitution by not sending the names of service chiefs to the senate for confirmation. He made this disclosure after the screening exercise.
Sekibo said, “The screening exercise today therefore is in fulfilment of the provisions of the constitution and the Armed Forces Act 2004 (Cap A.20 of the laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria) which has been flouted since it was enacted.
“This exercise we are performing today would satisfy the provisions of the constitution and law, and completely put our Armed Forces under our democratic norms.” he added
Senator Sekibo said, in a statement read during the screening exercise, that the committee would ascertain the competence of the officers in strategic military operations and not necessarily their academic qualifications.