By Naomi Sharang
The Senate on Tuesday confirmed the nomination of Prof. Mahmood Yakubu for re- appointment as Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Yakubu’s confirmation by the Senate followed the presentation of the report of its Committee on INEC by its Chairman, Sen. Kabiru Gaya, during plenary.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that President Muhammadu Buhari had on Nov. 25, transmitted to the Senate for confirmation, the nomination of Yakubu for a second term in office.
Presenting the report, Gaya said that the committee, while screening the nominee, found him capable and worthy for reappointment.
“The committee found out that there was no petition against him, the nominee displayed a high level of intelligence and he is a man of integrity,” Gaya said.
He further said that the confirmation of the nomination of the reappointment of the nominee was made under Section 153(1F) of the Constitution.
Contributing, Deputy President of the Senate, Omo Ovie-Agege, said “this is the first time we are having an INEC chairman renominated for a second term.
“President Muhammadu Buhari should be commended because he saw what the majority of Nigerians saw in the way and manner Prof. Yakubu conducted the affairs of INEC in the last five years.”
He said that the committee by recommending Yakubu for a second term, showed that the committee recognised the limitations placed on INEC by the enabling law, the Electoral Act.
“By this, they have come up with creative ideas on how we can sanitise the system by recommending the nominee,” he said.
Also, Sen. James Manager (PDP-Delta), described the nominee as a man who had displayed rare courage and impartiality in the conduct of elections during his first term.
“I urge the nominee that he should be more cautious of the INEC staff. This is because the name he will make when renominated is more important than his achievements in the past.
“He should do the job to leave a legacy that is more than what he had achieved,” he said.
Sen. Sandy Onor (PDP-Cross River), who said that Yakubu was an unbiased umpire, added that he was a square peg in a square hole.
“The nominee has demonstrated competence, and has shown indeed that he was an unbiased umpire. Today, politicians don’t go into elections scared of whether they will be oppressed or not.
“Going by his performance in the first term, he will do even better this second term. I’m looking forward to a situation where we will digitalise our processes even more.”
The upper chamber also confirmed the nomination of Sanusi Garba as Chairman, Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC).
Also confirmed was Dr Musiliu Olalekan Oseni and Aisha Mahmud as Vice Chairman and Commissioner of NERC, respectively. (NAN)