EndSARS: Reps in closed-door meeting with Service Chiefs

The essence of the committee is to address, towards a peace exit and ensuring that we have a harmonious nation.
Nigeria's Service Chiefs

In relation to the recent #ENDSARS protest across the country, which was later hijacked by hoodlums, the closed-door meeting is called a violation of national security.

The House at plenary on the 20th of October, 2020 had set up an adhoc committee under the chairmanship of the Deputy Speaker, Hon. Ahmed Idris Wase, to be supported by the House Chief, Hon. Alhassan Ado Doguwa and the representative of the minority, Hon. Ndudi Elumelu, with representatives drawn from all the House security-related committees to meet with the heads of security agencies to provide solutions.

In his brief remark, the Deputy Speaker said
“you may recall that on the 20th of October, 2020, the House passed a motion on the need to address the breach of national security under the peaceful protest in the country under the guise of #ENDSARS.

“With that, the House set up a committee to be headed by myself, the two leaders of the House (Minority and Majority Leaders), Chairmen of all relevant committees in terms of security and three members from each of the committees.

“The essence of the committee is to address, towards a peace exit and ensuring that we have a harmonious nation. This is the essence of the committee. This is our first meeting and we are going to take input from the various services.

“This is a matter that concerns security and no nation discusses its security situation on camera. With this, I want to beg the press to kindly excuse us so that we can have a very robust discussion.”

The Committee was formed after a motion supported by Hon. Sada Soli (APC, Katsina) with Hon. Julius Pondy
"on the urgent need to address the possible breach of national security in the national #ENDSARS protest".

Although recognizing the protesters' fundamental right to express their complaints in a peaceful and law-abiding manner and the real reason for such complaints, he said the federal government had quickly disbanded the Nigerian Police's SARS unit, which was the reason for the protest.

He expressed concern that Nigerians' legitimate protest was hijacked by hoodlums who took advantage of unleashing anarchy, adding that allowing the protest to linger would increase the rate of spread of covid-19, deter Nigerians from their right to free movement, and degenerate into chaos through hoodlum exploitation.

He called on the president to issue an executive order to deal with police brutality while appealing to the demonstrators to resolve the issues with the patience of the National Assembly and the presidency. He also called for the creation of an Ad-Hoc Committee to be headed by the Deputy Speaker, the House Leader, other chief officers, and the leadership of such related committees, such as the House Police Committee to ensure that the prayers of the motion are fulfilled and to return to the House for further legislative action.

Members who contributed to the October 20 motion also emphasized the need to take measures to tackle the issue, such as ongoing cooperation with relevant bodies while maintaining good governance.

Comptroller General of Nigeria Correctional Service, Ja'afaru Ahmed, Comptroller General, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Abdullahi Garba Mohammed, Yusuf Bichi, DG, Directorate of State Service and Mohammed Babandede, Comptroller General, Nigeria Immigration Service are among the physically present heads of security agencies.

Others who were represented include the Chief of Defence Staff who was represented by Major General John Enenche, Coordinator, Defence Media Operation and Major General C. Udeh, Chief of Defence Training and Operations; the Chief of Army Staff, who was represented by Brig General BR Sinjen, Acting Director of Operation, Army, the Chief of Naval Staff represented by Rear Admiral IT Olaiya, Chief of Training and Operation, Naval Headquarters, Chief of Air Staff represented by Air Vice Marshal Mohammed Adamu Idris, Chief of Policy and Planning, Nigeria Air Force and the Inspector General of Police who was represented by Aminchi Baraya, Deputy Inspector General of Police in charge of Logistics and Supply.