Senate screens Lauretta Onochie, five others as INEC commissioners

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By Henry Okonkwo

President of the Nigerian Senate, Ahmad Lawan, on Wednesday asked the Committee on Independent National Electoral Commission to screen for confirmation the appointments of Lauretta Onochie and five others as INEC commissioners.

This is coming eight months after President Muhammadu Buhari sent the list of nominees to the Senate for screening.

Onochie’s nomination triggered protests among the Peoples Democratic Party members in the red chamber.

The uproar halted the process of the screening as the opposition federal lawmakers were said to have accused Onochie, who is presently a presidential spokesperson, of being a harsh critic of their party.

They also faulted the idea of making her, a card-carrying member of the All Progressives Congress, an INEC commissioner.

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Other names on the list are Prof Muhammad Kallah (Katsina); Prof Kunle Ajayi (Ekiti); Saidu Ahmad (Jigawa); Prof Sani Adam (North- Central); and Dr Baba Bila (North-East).

The Senate INEC panel, which has Kabiru Gaya as Chairman, has four weeks to conclude the screening and report back to the red chamber at plenary.

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