350 lawyers resist proposed armed forces bill
The bill is sponsored by Senator Eyinnaya Abaribe.
Sponsored by Senate Minority leader and lawmaker representing Abia-South, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, the bill, among others, seeks to address the lopsided appointment of heads of security agencies by the president.
The Senate's Minority Leader and others connected with the said bill have come under criticism, the latest being legal practitioners under the aegis, Lawyers Initiative for Democratic Advocacy (LIDA).
In a letter signed by Director of Communication, Ekpa Stanley Ekpa and addressed to Senate President Ahmed Lawan, the group declared that as legal practitioners, it was their duty to ensure that the rule of law, justice and separation of powers are upheld for the betterment of the ordinary citizens.
The group believes that if passed, the bill will whittle down the president's powers and hand it over to the legislative arm while also establishing the Armed Forces Service Commission.
It revealed that the armed forces bill goes against their mission, describing it as “obnoxious and repulsive, targeted at reducing the Nigerian Armed Forces into a mushroom assemblage that can be easily subjected to political interference”.
The group argued that it is the duty of the Federal Character Commission to enforce the Federal Character Principle and not that of the Senate and if passed the bill would lead to several administrative crisis among the various bodies involved.
It added that the bill would "serve no useful purpose" towards the development of Nigeria.
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