Service Chiefs to resume without Senate confirmation
The planned resumption of service chiefs tomorrow without Senate confirmation may foist a fait accompli on the lawmakers.
The Senate is on recess until February 9.
Section 218 of the 1999 Constitution provides that the President has the powers to appoint the service chiefs, but sub-section 4 recognises the powers of the National Assembly “to make laws for the regulation of (a) the powers exercisable by the President…”
Section 18 of the Armed Forces Act provides that the service chiefs must be confirmed by the lawmakers.
Sub-section 1 says: “The President may, after consultation with the Chief of Defence Staff and subject to the confirmation by the National Assembly, appoint such officers (in this Act referred to as ‘Service Chiefs’) as he thinks fit, in whom the command of the Army, Navy and Air Force, as the case may be, and their Reserves shall be vested.”
The Senate, on August 4, 2015, screened and confirmed the immediate-past service chiefs at a closed-door session.