The Senate has stepped down the confirmation of the Special Assistant to the President on Social Media, Lauretta Onochie, as a National Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The chamber has reached out to the presidency to replace Onochie, whose nomination has divided senators.
The Presidency is currently weighing its options on her although it can still re-present the nominee depending on political circumstance.
Onochie’s fate is delaying the confirmation of three others on the list submitted to the Senate by President Muhammadu Buhari.
Buhari had on October 13, nominated Onochie and three others as INEC commissioners: Prof. Muhammad Sani Kallah (National, from Katsina State); Prof. Kunle Cornelius Ajayi (Ekiti) and Saidu Babura Ahmad (Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC (Jigawa).
Buhari, in the letter, had said:
“Pursuant to Paragraph 14 of Part I (F) of the Third Schedule to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, as amended, I hereby forward for confirmation by the Senate, the appointment of the following four Commissioners for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).”
The Nation gathered that the Senate committee discovered that Onochie is “greatly partisan based on her conviction that All Progressives Congress (APC) and President Buhari are the best for Nigeria”.
It was learnt that apart from protest by the opposition, some APC senators also agreed that she is “positively partisan” in her devotion to work.
The affected APC senators vowed that they would not back her clearance since a candidate for Resident Electoral Commissioner from Osun State was rejected in similar circumstances.