Nigeria: National Assembly to send fact-finding mission to South East

Nigerian Senate President Bukola Saraki

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The Nigerian National Assembly is to embark on a fact-finding investigation aimed at determining what happened during a military exercise in the South-east.

During the operation, a disturbance occurred, which involved members of a secessionist group.

Senate President Bukola Saraki said in a statement released in Abuja, that it was to enable it to sift the facts from the fiction, adding that all the facts were not yet known.

He assured Nigerians that there would be no cover-up, saying that all facts would be laid bare.

He called for calm and restraint by all Nigerians to provide the right solution to the current situation rather than worsening it.

The president of the Senate urged the people of the South-East to continue to maintain peace and tranquility and go about their lawful business.

He explained that if allowed to continue, the situation would only expose innocent people to unwarranted danger.

He commended Nigerians in other parts of the country who had worked to ensure that the crisis did not spread beyond the South-East.

Saraki called for peace and stability to ensure that Nigerians, irrespective of religion, tribe, and creed, remained protected and safe under the law.

“It is also important that commentators and purveyors of information on all media platforms should be conscious of the need, at all times, to maintain the unity of the country.

“Therefore, they must refrain from circulating information that has the potential for aggravating the crisis.

“We should all realize that Nigeria is all we have.It is therefore in our individual and collective interests not to stoke the fire of crisis and fan the embers of discord through the messages we spread.

“We must all protect and strengthen our country rather than contribute to her collapse and disintegration.”

Saraki emphasized that the National Assembly was vested with the power to prescribe any erring group or organization.

“We want to remind Nigerians that the reason for constitution review by the National Assembly was to enable us to look into issues that are agitating the minds of Nigerians and creating tension among us.

“We have promised that the exercise will be continuous. We intend to keep that promise by further taking decisions that will strengthen and improve on our structures,’’ he said.

Saraki assured Nigerians that the national assembly would on resumption, play its constitutional role by addressing all issues that the citizens wanted to be addressed.

He called on political, religious and traditional leaders to continue to engage with the people on the need to maintain peace.

He commended the military for their efforts in restoring peace to different parts of the country, adding that: “We need to strengthen the police and equip them with the capacity to deal with the civil crisis.

“That is why, we, in the National Assembly, are already reviewing the Police Act and looking at the possibility of enabling other para-military agencies to help curb civil unrest and maintenance of law and order.’’
– Ugo Okoro I VON