The National Assembly Joint Committee on Army on Tuesday met with the leadership of the Nigerian Army behind closed doors at the Defence Headquarters Abuja.
Though the details of the meeting were not made available to journalists, it may not be unconnected with the 2020 budget for which N100 billion was allocated to the Armed Forces.
Giving hint of the purpose of the meeting at the Chief of Army conference room, shortly before the commencement of the meeting, leader of the delegation and Chairman Senate Committee on Army, Senator Ali Ndume said the visit was in continuation of the oversight functions of the Committee.
Ndume, who condemned the N100 billion budget proposals for the Armed Forces as insufficient, said: “The Committee embarked on a fact finding mission and NEEDS assessment across military units and formations to know what is going on.
“After our tour, we decided to come to the center so that we can talk especially now that the budget of the Nigerian Army is out for consideration, so this not a visit that you will discuss the details to the press”.
Chairman House Committee on Army, Hon Abdul Razaq Namdas, said the budget for the entire Armed Forces was insufficient.
According to him: “We are in a war period and there should be war period, we will see what we can do together.
“It is interesting to know that on the floor of the Senate there is already a Motion on ground stating to see how we can fund the Armed Forces even outside the normal budget because we realized that budget alone is not likely to take us there”.
The Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, described the visit as a strategic move, which he said is already addressing the critical challenges of the Nigerian Army is having. According to him: “I appreciate you and be assured that the Nigerian Army will remain loyal to the Constitution. What you saw in the field is a true reflection of the Nigerian Army of today, they are committed, disciplined and loyal”.