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Buhari cannot reject INEC REC nominees over unproven allegations, Lai replies CSOs

  Lai Mohammed, minister of information, says it is not the business of President Muhammadu Buhari to withdraw the nomination of resident el...

 


Lai Mohammed, minister of information, says it is not the business of President Muhammadu Buhari to withdraw the nomination of resident electoral commissioners (RECs) over “unproven” allegations.

 

Mohammed spoke on Wednesday at the end of the federal executive council (FEC) meeting.

 

In July, Buhari asked the senate to confirm 19 nominees as RECs of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

 

The nomination of the RECs has been rejected by civil society organisations (CSOs).

 

 “Some of the nominees of the President fail the constitutional test of non-partisanship and unquestionable integrity. Evidence abounds that some of the nominees are either partisan, politically aligned, or previously indicted for corruption,” the CSOs had said.

 

“To mention a few, Prof. Muhammad Lawal Bashir from Sokoto was a governorship aspirant under the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2015 election cycle. Mrs. Sylvia Uchenna Agu, the nominee for Enugu state, is believed to be the younger sister of the APC deputy national chairman, south-east.”

 

Reacting to the development, the information minister said the allegations do not mean that the nominees are guilty.


“As to the nominees that are being challenged by social media warriors and by some critics, I don’t think it is the business of the president to immediately throw out the nominee based on allegations which have not been proven,” he said.

 

“I think the whole idea is that these people will go for confirmation in the national assembly. The same questions that are being raised in the public domain will be asked there.

 

“I think this media trial is quite worrisome, because even when these people are cleared of any wrongdoing, nobody comes back to apologise to them.

 

“So, my advice is, yes, there’ll be allegations against anybody; it does not mean that fellow is guilty. Let’s wait for the process to be completed.”

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