Attack at NASS: Bala Usman petitions IG, DSS on Safety
Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority, Hadiza Bala Usman has called for the investigation and prosecution of perpetrators of the harassment and humiliation to which she was subjected to by people believed to be hirelings of Chairman of Ocean Maritime Solutions Limited (OMSL), Captain Idahosa Okunbo on the premises of the National Assembly on Tuesday, December 3, 2019.
Bala Usman, in a petition addressed to the Inspector General of Police, the President of the Senate and Director- General of the Department of State Services (DSS), explained that she was at the senate on the said date to honour the invitation of the Joint Committee on Navy, Marine Transport and Finance to its public hearing on the Safe Anchorage Area of the Lagos Ports. This followed a motion on “illegal security activities by OMSL at the Safe Anchorage Area of Lagos Ports and the need to investigate their excesses,” moved by Senator George Sekibo during the senate plenary on November 7, 2019. She explained that the committee had invited other parties, which included the Nigerian Navy and the OMSL.
“In the course of the session, Captain (Dr) Idahosa Wells Okunbo of OMSL, having made his submission, stormed out visibly angry breathing fire and brimstone. Following Captain Idahosa Wells Okunbo outburst and abrupt exit, the Chairman of the Joint Committee closed the session” the petition reads.
Bala Usman further wrote that: “On leaving the meeting room some hoodlums that accompanied Captain Okunbo to the hearing ambushed me at the exit door and tried to push their way towards me to physically attack me, raining abuses on me that I was taking food away from them and their boss, and that they will find me and destroy me.”
The Managing Director explained that it took the efforts of her security detail and the Executive Director, Marine and Operations Dr. Sekonte H. Davies of NPA and security personnel deployed from the office of the Deputy Senate President for her and her entourage to leave the premises unhurt.
While calling for the full investigation of the incident with the intent of bringing the culprits to face the full wrath of the law, the NPA boss said she takes the direct threats to her life issued by these hoodlums seriously. She further informed the Inspector General of Police, the DG, DSS as well as all Nigerians that Capt. Idahosa Wells Okunbo should be held responsible if any harm should befall her or any member of her family.
Bala Usman expressed shock at how these hoodlums gained access into the premises of the National Assembly and the audacity of attacking representatives of the federal government who were at the NASS on invitation, an act which she described as the height of impunity and disrespect.
Jatto A Adams
General Manager, Corporate and Strategic Communications
Nigerian Ports Authority