Olaleye Idowu

High level of criticism has continued to greet the Nomination  by President Muhammadu Buhari’s Special Assistant on social media, Lauretta Onochie as National Commissioner Nominees of the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC

The letter communicating the decision had barely been read by Senate President Ahmad Lawan at plenary in the Senate than missiles began flying from all quarters over the nomination, which the opposition termed partisan and unconstitutional.

In a statement made available to urban Express-News Online through the situation Room Coordinator, Clement Nwankwo, the group of civil society faults the nomination of Presidential aide.

The Statement Entitled: Situation Room’s Statement On President Buhari’s Appointment of National Commissioner; the Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room said it’s concerned about the nomination of Ms Lauretta Onochie, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Social Media as National Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) representing the South-South, says Ms Onochie is a known partisan supporter of President Muhammadu Buhari and his ruling party, the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Sitting Relevant laws, it states “ Item F, paragraph 14 of the third schedule of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended) forbids a partisan politics as a member of INEC – a body charged under the Constitution to unabashedly conduct of free and fair elections.

The state put further “that her nomination amounts to a major attempt at undermining efforts to build credibility for an improved electoral process in the country.

 The Situation Room calls on President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately withdraw her nomination.

 “President Buhari had failed to withdraw this nomination of the Nigerian Senate is hereby called upon to disregard her nomination without any consideration whatsoever.

“Situation Room is also calling on the Nigerian Senate to investigate all of the other nominations by the President especially as there are concerns that some of these nominations may have been by self-serving interests”.

“It is important for Nigeria that the composition of INEC is transparently non-partisan and independent of partisan political manipulation.

 The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on its part labelled the attempt as “a highly provocative assault on the nation’s constitution and Democratic process “.

Addressing a press conference, its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, regretted that Buhari had “failed to fulfil his promise of leaving a legacy of credible elections, having failed in all ramifications of governance.”

It argued: “Item F, Paragraph 14 of the Third Schedule of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended) forbids a partisan politics as a member of INEC – a body charged under the constitution to unabashedly conduct free and fair elections.

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