OrderPaperToday – Senator Kabir Marafa (APC, Zamfara) stirred a mild drama on the floor of the Senate over the rejection of a Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) nominee who is to represent his state.
In 2017, the nominee, Ahmed Mahmud was sent for confirmation but based on controversies that he was not an indigene of the state but from Sokoto state, he was rejected.
Senator Marafa had protested profusely, alleging that his State Governor, Abdul-azeez Yari, was behind the rejection of the nominee.
Marafa’s arguement was that since Mr. Mahmud lived all his life in Zamfara where he was a one-time Attorney General, he should be identified as an indigene.
The Senate then stood down the rejection and told its committee on INEC to review the nominee’s confirmation.
Presenting the report today however, the Chairman committee, Suleiman Nazif, restated that the nominee stands rejected while the report approved the nominations of three others for the position of RECs.
Those approved are Monday Tom (Akwa-Ibom), Attahiru Madami (Niger) and Festus Okoye (South East political zone).
An obviously dissatisfied Marafa immediately stood up and accused Senator Nazif of “compromising” the report of the Committee, a very grave allegation in parliamentary practice.
The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, intervened at this point and asked that Marafa withdraws the charge because it is against the standing rules to indict another senator. The Zamfara senator refused and the Senate went ahead to deliberate on the report in the committee on the whole.
At the end of deliberations, the red chamber however approved the confirmation of the Zamfara nominee and the three others.
At this point, Senator Marafa changed tune and apologized to the Senate for his earlier accusation.
Meanwhile, Senator James Manager (PDP, Delta) who also submitted earlier that the report in question was incomplete, also withdrew his statement.