Armed Forces bill: Lawyers vow to take legal action against Senate

Armed Forces bill: Lawyers vow to take legal action against Senate

- About 350 lawyers in Nigeria have written a letter to the Senate President over the newly proposed Armed Forces Bill

- The lawyers in the letter said an attempt by the Senate to pass the bill into law will be resisted

- According to the lawyers, the Armed Forces can be easily subjected to political interference with such a bill

Some lawyers have vowed to take legal action against the ninth Nigerian Senate over its proposed Armed Forces Commission Bill.

The lawyers numbering about 350 said they will resist any attempt by the Senate to pass the proposed bill into law in the country.

In a letter addressed to the Senate president, Ahmad Lawan, and dated March 13, 2020, the lawyers under the aegis of Lawyers Initiative for Democratic Advocacy (LIDA) said it is their duty to ensure that the rule of law, justice and separation of powers are upheld for the good of Nigerians.

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Armed Forces bill: Lawyers vow to take legal action against Senate

The lawyers said the bill would lead to several administrative crises among the various bodies involved.
Source: UGC

The lawyers also said that the new bill sponsored by the senator representing Abia South senatorial district is targeted at reducing the Nigerian Armed Forces into a mushroom assemblage.

According to the lawyers, the Armed Forces can be easily subjected to political interference with such a bill.

The group said it is the duty of the Federal Character Commission to enforce the Federal Character Principle and not that of the Senate.

LIDA noted that should the bill be passed into law, it would lead to several administrative crises among the various bodies involved.

"We will resist any attempt by narcissist elements within and outside the country to assail and defile our sacrosanct Constitution," LIDA said in its letter.

Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that Abaribe in defence of the bill said the lopsided appointment of service chiefs is worrisome.

He added that the bill if passed into law, will address such issues.

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Also, should be bill scale through the Senate and is passed into law, it means that the appointment of Chief of Defence Staff, Chief of Army Staff, Chief of Air Staff, Chief of Naval Staff, Director of Military Intelligence and heads of other arm-bearing security agencies shall be made subject to recommendations by the Armed Forces Service Commission.

Such recommendations made by the commission can then be approved by either the Senate or the president as the case may be.

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However, the proposal of the bill has come under have condemnation as many civil society organisations and retired military officers had warned that the bill seeks to whittle down the powers of the president.

Criticising the newly proposed bill, the CSOs have also said that the bill was never sponsored in the interest of Nigeria or Nigerians in the first place.

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In addition to the proposed bill, the Senate is seeking the re-establishment of a military base at the Sambisa forest borders.

The Senate said the move is part of its suggestions to end insurgency in the northeast.

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Source: Legit

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