Nigerian spy chief fired over parliament 'takeover'

Kalerkantho Online   

8 August, 2018 10:34 AM

Nigerian spy chief fired over parliament 'takeover'

Members of security forces block the entrance of the National Assembly [Reuters]

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Nigeria's head of the intelligence service has been fired after security services staged a brief "takeover" of parliament in the capital Abuja, at a time when President Muhammadu Buhari is out of the country.  

Hooded armed men from the police and Department of State Service (DSS) blocked access to the two chambers - the Senate and House of Representatives - on Tuesday morning, preventing lawmakers, workers, journalists and other visitors from entering.

Images of the incident were shared widely on social media, reviving memories of the decades, when the military and security forces held sway over politics in a country that has one of Africa's largest economies, reports Aljazeera. 

Later in the day, Buhari's office denied authorising the move, which comes amid a surge of tension between the president and his political rivals.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo - who is acting as head of the country while Buhari is on holiday in London, ordered the dismissal of DSS chief Lawal Musa Daura "with immediate effect".

He described the "unauthorised takeover" of the National Assembly as "a gross violation of constitutional order" and "rule of law".