The Senate presided over by Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu has walked Comptroller-General of Customs, Hammed Ali, out of the Chambers for not wearing uniform.
His appearance was sequel to the Senate resolution that he “appear in Customs uniform” to brief the Senate on the proposed car import duties.Hameed Ali who appeared in white kaftan with cap to match having been admitted into the Chambers was immediately reminded on the resolution that he was expected to appear in uniform
“Distinguished Senators, you recall that there a resolution yesterday that the Comptroller-Generalof Customs appear before the Senate in Uniform”, Ekweremadu said.
He however, submitted that there was no law compelling him to wear uniform, particularly as a former Military officer, adding that car import duties policy has also been suspended for now.
“Mr. President, Distinguished Senators, I received the letter to appear before you in Uniform, but I have seen from the point of law, that am not bound to wear Customs uniform. More so, we have decided to suspend car import duties for now”, Ali said.Senator Bala Ibn N’allah in his reference to Acts establishing the Nigeria Customs Service insisted that he must appear in Uniform.
Contributing, Senator Jibrin Barau said, it was clear in the command and control of Customs Service that uniform is sacrosanct, suggesting that he should be asked to go and get his uniform before addressing the Senate next time.
Senator Ali Wakili, a former Customs officer, described as needless, grandstanding between the Senate and the Customs on point of uniform, urging that he should be allowed to mediate particularly as ‘amicus curae’ of the Customs.
“Mr. President, Distinguished Colleagues, as a former Customs officer and now a Senator, I will always strike a balance between my position now and then. To borrow a word from lawyers, I am anamicus curae of Customs, I want the Senate to allow me mediate”, Wakili maintained.Senators George Sekibo, Barnabas Gemade were unanimous on the issue of uniform.
While advising the CG, Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu noted that as number one, he ought to live by example, sustaining the motion that he should appear Wednesday next week in uniform