Armoured Cars Scandal: Stella Oduah fails to appear before Senate panel ...AGAIN!

The expected appearance of the Minister of Aviation, Ms. Stella Oduah, before the Senate was botched Thursday for the third time as she blamed her inability to honour the invitation of the Committee on Aviation on the landing mishap by a Saudi Arabian cargo aircraft at Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.

In the same vein, the Senate’s scheduled meeting with service chiefs yesterday could not hold as a number of them were absent due to what was described as logistic reasons.

The security agents were expected to brief the senators on the update on emergency rule in three North-eastern states of Borno, Yobe and Adamawa.

The first expected appearance of Oduah was botched following the absence of Senate President, David Mark, on the floor of the Senate that day as Mark was billed to travel to Dubai to represent President Goodluck Jonathan at the finals of the FIFA Under-17 Championship in Dubai, the capital of United Arab Emirates.

Her second awaited appearance was also botched following Senate’s decision to rescind its October 8 resolution summoning the embattled Aviation Minister to appear before the Committee of the Whole Senate to explain perceived negligence in the aviation sector which resulted in the crash of Associated Airlines’ aircraft conveying the corpse of former Governor of Ondo State, Dr. Olusegun Agagu, on October 3.

The chamber resolved that the minister should appear before the committee instead of the whole house.

Speaking on Oduah’s absence yesterday, Chairman of Aviation Committee, Senator Hope Uzodimma, said the meeting had been rescheduled for Tuesday, December 10.
Also Thursday, the planned briefing of the Senate by service chiefs could not hold as the Chief of Army Staff, Gen. Ihejirika Onyeabor, Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Dele Ezeoba, and the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, were absent over what the Senate’s spokesman, Enyinnaya Abaribe, described as “logistics.”

Briefing journalists after yesterday’s plenary, Abaribe said: “The meeting didn’t go as scheduled because it was a delicate issue and heads of agencies were not available. We felt that what we were trying to get was of sufficient importance to the nation and we would not get complimentary briefing if they were not present. Therefore, we resolved to postpone the briefing to another legislative day.”