Hameed Ali, comptroller-general of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), on Wednesday failed to honour the invitation of the senate.
Ali’s hearing was the first on the order paper of the senate for Wednesday.
The senate had summoned Ali to appear before it in uniform over the customs’ plan to seize vehicles without paid duty.
He had written to the upper legislative chamber that he would not be available on Wednesday because he had a management meeting to attend.
But the senate was irked by his letter, and it resolved that he must appear before it on the day.
However, hours after the senate had adjourned its sitting, Ali sent another letter to Senate President Bukola saraki.
In the letter, he said he was bereaved; hence he would not make it to the upper legislative chamber on Wednesday.
He also said the decision to impound some vehicles was being reviewed.
Saraki read the letter during a plenary session of the senate, when it became clear that Ali was not around.
He made a surprise visit to the senate president at the national assembly complex on Tuesday evening, and both men had a private meeting.
On Wednesday, the senate passed a resolution compelling Ali to appear before it on Thursday.
The resolution of the senate to compel Ali to come before it was sequel to a motion moved by Thomson Sekibo, senator representing Rivers east.