REPS PROBE SALE OF DEFENCE COLLEGE STAFF QUARTERS

The House of Representatives has mandated its joint committees on Defence and Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to investigate a process adopted in the sale of the Defence College property and report back to the House within four (4) weeks for further legislative action.

The House also urged the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) to suspend all actions regarding the sale of the properties in Zone C Quarters, Apo Abuja, being residences of staff and students of the National Defence College pending the outcome of the investigations.

The resolution was taken at yesterday’s plenary following the adoption of a motion brought by Hon. Tajudeen Adekunle Obasa (APC, Kogi). In his lead debate, Obasa said he was aware that the National Defence College (NDC) Quarters located at Zone C, Apo, Abuja was allocated to the College by the FCTA in 1995 to provide accommodation for military and civilian staff of the National Defence College. He informed the House that all the 88 blocks in the quarters have been sold by the FCTA to individuals who are currently processing the issuance of Certificates of Occupancy (C-of-O) even though the students and staff of the College were still in occupation of the properties.

According to him, “the procedure for the sale of houses did not follow due process as the occupants of the houses were not given the right of first refusal.

No announcements were made for the sale and no bidding/auction process was conducted” Also yesterday, the House asked the Inspector- General of Police, Alhaji Ibrahim Idris to activate the machinery of the Nigerian Police Force by evolv ing a mechanism to mop up large cache of small arms and light weapons in the hands of criminals. It also urged the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS), the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and other relevant agencies to intensify efforts at tracking down and eliminating the sources of supply of those weapons as well as ensure adequate security at the borders.

The decision was consequent upon a motion brought by Hon. Lynda Chuba Ikpeazu (PDP, Anambra). Presenting the motion, the lawmaker said that the trafficking in, and proliferation of small arms and light weapons was fuelling communal conflicts, engendering political stability and pose threats, not only to national security, but also to sustainable development.

She noted that the widespread proliferation and use of illicit small arms and light weapons by undesirable elements cuts across all geo-political zones of the country is contributing to the alarming levels of armed robbery, kidnappings, terrorism and militancy that are ravaging the country.

She expressed regret that the nation’s borders have been porous and difficult to police over the years, and the inability of the law enforcement agencies to check the supply of small arms and light weapons into Nigeria has worsened the security situation in the country. In adopting the motion, the House also urged the executive to ensure that a frequently updated base on weaponry is maintained by the security agencies.

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