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PDP Senators Clash Over Army Recruitment




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Senators elected on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Tuesday clashed during a Army Committee sitting over alleged lopsided recruitment in the Nigerian Army.

The mild drama occurred during an interactive meeting between members of the committee and the Commander, Training and Doctrine Command of the Nigerian Army, Major General S.O Olabanji.

It was gathered that the acting chairman of the committee, Senator Abba Moro (PDP Benue) had prevented his colleagues Senators Ibrahim Danbaba (PDP Sokoto) and Barinada Mpigi (PDP Rivers) from question General Olabanji over allegation of lopsided recruitment carried out by the Army recently.

This did not go down well with the two lawmakers who angrily staged a walk out after registering their displeasure.

Senator Moro had ruled against the questioning of the senior military officer, insisting that the session was not for review of recruitment made by the Army but on tactical training and doctrine of men and officers.

“The questions being raised by my colleagues on alleged lopsided recruitments are being thrown to the wrong person. The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Farouk Yahaya is the one who can do justice to such allegation or enquiry,” he said.

Speaking to newsmen after they stormed out, Senator Danbaba said he walked out of the meeting with Senator Mpigi because of dictatorial action of the committee chairman.

The Lawmaker said: “He shouldn’t have ruled us out of order since the military man the question was directed to did not complain.

“The issue of marginalization in recruitment has never been responded to, it is part of the oversight process of the committee to ensure that whatever is to be done should be done to ensure Justice.

“The Nigerian army like any institution of government in Nigeria is supposed to comply with provisions of the constitution of the federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended and that constitution has made it very clear that the issue of federal character and representation is paramount is a constitutional issue.

“I’m not blaming the army, the army has been performing very well, but at the same time the issue of recruitment is very important.

“I left the meeting, I stormed out with Mpigi because we were angry.”

Reacting in a separate interview with newsmen, Abba Moro insisted that he was right to rule the duo out.

According to the Benue-born politician, Danbaba and Mpigi directed their question to the wrong person.

He said: “What explanation were they expecting from Commander, Training and Doctrine Command on recruitment.

“Besides, the committee had tabled the issue before the Chief of Army Staff few months ago with response bordering on physical and medical reasons for those recruited and those who failed in the exercise.”

George Oshogwe Ogbolu is a Digital Media Strategist | Content Writer | Journalist | New Media Influencer | Proofreader and Editor at Naija News.