OrderPaperToday – Service chiefs including the Chief of Defence Staff, Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin, the Director-General (DG) of the Department of State Security, Lawal Daura and representatives of the Inspector General of Police, the Comptroller-General of Customs, and Comptroller General of Immigration have cited insufficient funding as a major factor hindering performance of their duty of protecting lives and properties of citizens.
The service chiefs made their position known in a closed door meeting with Senators on Wednesday that lasted for four hours.
This demand for more funds is separate from recent controversial presidential approvals including $1billion from the Excess Crude account and another $496million for Tucano aircraft which placed the Executive and Legislature on war paths recently.
But speaking at the end of the security briefing, the Senate President revealed the outcome of the meeting, saying that the service chiefs have been mandated to present a special funding budget within two weeks as a result.
“On the whole, we decided that on our part, certain outstanding bills or protocols that need to be given a fast-track will be addressed immediately to see how they can be passed as soon as possible in order to strengthen our security architecture.
“Secondly, we all observed the funding issue and also agreed that there must be special funding. So we gave them two weeks to present their own budget on the area of special funding that we think will go a long way to improve the security situation in the country,” Saraki said.
He added that the red chamber will look into evolving legislation that will ensure better coordination among security agencies even as he promised that changes in the security situation will be noticed in the coming weeks.
The Senate spokesperson, Abdullahi Sabi, while addressing journalists at the end of the briefing, confirmed that this special funding for security agencies is separate from the $1 billion dollars withdrawn from the Excess Crude Account to fight boko haram terrorism in the North East.
He explained that the special funding will be later presented as a supplementary budget.