Nigerian Senate on Tuesday confirmed 37 out of 38 nominees of the Federal Character Commission submitted to it by President Muhammadu Buhari three weeks ago.
Chairman of the Senate Committee on Federal Character Commission and Intergovernmental Affairs, Senator Danjuma La’ah, who earlier laid the report, explained on Tuesday that nominees have been scrutinised in line with Parliamentary rules.
DAILY POST reports that the Senate Minority Leader, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe (PDP Abia South), however kicked against the emerging situation of Nigerians from the same part of the country occupying the positions of chairman and secretary of the commission, saying that it was against the Federal Character principle.
He made the observation while calling for the nomination of the Chairman and Secretary from different zones of the country as has been the practice in the past.
Abaribe said the task of nominating the two positions between the North and South was in line with section 14(3) of the 1999 Constitution as amended.
“Appointment of Mohammed Bello Tukur from Taraba State in 2017 as Secretary of the Commission by President Muhamnadu Buhari, gave the impression that a new Chairman would be from the South but the nomination of Dr. Muheeba Dankaka from Kwara State as the new chairman, violated the age-long principle.
“The Senate needs to look into this in the spirit of the principles of the federal character itself “, he said.
Reacting to the Minority leader’s observation, Deputy President of the Senate, Ovie Omo-Agege maintained that it is within the powers of Mr. President to nominate whoever he wants and asked the Senate to jettison Abaribe’s submission.
He added that the perceived anomaly would be considered in the future.
“President Buhari is aware of the need to balance the positions and will do that when the tenure of the incumbent secretary expires in February next year.
“Mr. President, this issue has been in the public domain since the nominees were sent here for confirmation and since there is a window of redressing perceived anomaly in a few month’s time, I will urge us to please forge ahead with the confirmation “, he said.
Consequently, Ahmad Lawan agreed with the position of DSP, calling on lawmakers to confirm nominees.
Aside the Chairman, other nominees confirmed were Henry Ogbulogo, Abia; Salihu Bello, Adamawa; Obonganwan Deborah Daniel Ebony, Akwa-Ibom; Ibeabuchi Uche, Anambra; Mohammed Tijjani, Bauchi; Tonye Okio, Bayelsa; Silas Mfa Macikpah, Benue; Abba Ali Monguno, Borno; Nsor Atamgba, Cross River; and Alims Agoda.
Others are: Tobias Chukuemeka, Ebonyi; Imuetinyan Festus, Edo; Sesan Fatoba; Ginika Florence Tor, Enugu; Hamza Mohammed, Gombe; Diogu Uche, Imo; Lawan Ya’u Roni, Jigawa; Hadiza Usman Muazu, Kaduna; Mohammed Awwal Na’iya, Kano; Lawal Garba, Katsina; Abubakar Atiku Bunu, Kebbi; Idris Eneye Bello, Kogi; Are Miftah Bolaji, Lagos; Nasir Isa Kwarra, Nasarawa; and Suleiman Barau, Niger.
Also confirmed are Abiodun Isiaq Akinlade, Ogun; Olufemi Omosanya, Ondo; Adeoye Abdularazaq Olalekan, Osun; Adeniyi Olowofela, Oyo; Stephen Jings, Plateau; Wokocha Augustine, Rivers; Abdullahi Taminu Tafida, Sokoto; Alhaji Armaya’u Dauda Abubakar, Taraba; Jibril Maigari, Yobe; Sani Garba, Zamfara; and Adamu Mohammed Sidi-Ali and Federal Capital Territory.