…say rejection good for democracy

Civil Society groups, eminent Nigerians and opposition figures on Tuesday described the rejection of presidential aide Lauretta Onochie’s nomination as Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) national commissioner as a victory for democracy.

They said the Senate has restored its integrity and restored hope in democracy.

The senate committee on INEC had recommended rejection of Onochie, because her nomination runs against the federal character principle.

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When the recommendation was put to voice by Senate President Ahmad Lawan during plenary, the ‘nay’ response was unanimous and unmistaken.

Lawan consequently hit the gravel to ratify the vote and disqualify Onochie.

Prof. Muhammed Adam’s nomination was stepped down while five other nominees were cleared.

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The nominees confirmed are: Prof. Muhammed Kallah (representing Katsina State), Prof. Kunle   Ajayi (Ekiti), Seidu Ahmad (Jigawa State), Dr. Baba Bila (Northeast), and Prof. Abdullahi Zuru (Northwest).

The Centre for Transparency Advocacy (CTA), Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG), Democracy Vanguard of the Citizenship Civic Awareness Centre (CCAC) and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) expressed support for the action

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Onochie’s nomination in 2020 for the job by President Muhammadu Buhari had been widely criticised by many, including the PDP and a former INEC Chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega, on the grounds that it would affect the neutrality of INEC as an electoral umpire.


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