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The Senate on Wednesday confirmed the 19 Residents Electoral Commissioners whose names were sent by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.).
The nominees who were confirmed are Ibrahim Abdullahi (Adamawa); Obo Effanga (Cross River); Umar Ibrahim (Taraba); Agboke Olaleke (Ogun); Samuel Egwu (Kogi), Onyeka Ugochi (Imo); Muhammad Bashir (Sokoto) and Ayobami Salami from Oyo State.
Others are Zango Abdu (Katsina); Queen Agwu (Ebonyi), Agundu Tersoo (Benue); Yomere Oritsemlebi (Delta); Yahaya Ibrahim, (Kaduna); Nura Ali (Kano); Agu Uchenna (Enugu); Ahmed Garki (FCT); Hudu Yunusa (Bauchi); Uzochukwu Chijioke, (Anambra) and Mohammed Nura (Yobe).
The Senate Committee on the Independent National Electoral Commission chaired by Senator Kabiru Gaya (APC Kano South) had, last week, screened the nominees behind closed doors.
Presenting his report to the Senate, Gaya said, “To determine their suitability for the positions which they were nominated, nominees were asked questions that bothered mostly on partisanship, membership of political parties, and how they hoped to improve the electoral process if and when their nominations for appointments are confirmed.”
The nominees, Gaya said, assured the committee of their non-partisanship, non-membership of any political party, and promised to discharge their responsibilities diligently according to the laid down laws.
He said the committee found no merit in the petitions against four nominees that bordered on alleged membership of political parties, partisanship, compromise and incompetence.
“The committee did due diligence on the petitions by listening to the defence of the nominees and carrying out a detailed examination of the petitions to determine the validity or otherwise of the allegations against the four nominees,” Gaya said.
The PUNCH reported that some civil society organisations kicked against the nomination of persons alleged to be members of the ruling All Progressives Congress
The group in a statement signed by its Chairman, Auwal Rafsanjani, described the nomination as a strategy to influence the process and outcome of the election in favour of the APC.
The CSOs claimed that the nominee from Sokoto was an APC governorship aspirant in 2015 while the nominee from Enugu was alleged to be the younger sister of the APC Deputy National Chairman, South-East among other allegations.