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Hurdles for ministerial nominees

Posted by By ISMAIL OMIPIDAN and JACOB EDI, Abuja on 2007/07/12 | Views: 474 |

Hurdles for ministerial nominees


The fate of some ministerial nominees hang in the balance as the Senate begins their screening.

* 17 cleared by security agencies for senate screening

The fate of some ministerial nominees hang in the balance as the Senate begins their screening.

Those walking the tight-rope include the national secretary of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Ojo Maduekwe (Abia) Chief Charles Ugwu (Imo) and Gabriel Adukwu (Kogi) who have a welter of complaints lodged against them before the upper legislative chamber.

The opposition to their nominations is coming as it emerged Monday that only 17, out of the list of 34 ministers designate, have been cleared by the security agencies and are therefore, ready to be considered by the lawmakers.

Ahead of the exercise, Senator Uche Chukwumerije confirmed through a telephone interview on Monday that he had joined his two colleagues from Abia State, Senators Nkechi Nwogu and Eyinnaya Abaribe, in the move to stop Maduekwe from being confirmed minister.

With this latest development, it means all three senators from the state are expected by convention to rise up to speak against the PDP scribe’s nomination.
By convention, once a nominee appears before the Senate, the Senate President will put a question to senators from the state the nominees comes from, to ask whether or not they support him. At least two of them must back the nomination, otherwise, it is unlikely such nominee will get the nod of the legislative body.

But the three senators must lobby their other colleagues to ensure that when the final question is put, they all respond in the negative, otherwise, the former Transport Minister may emerge in President Umaru Yar’Adua’s cabinet.
In fact, sources said the Senate Leader, Senator Teslim Folarin, is reaching out on behalf of Maduekwe to get other senators’ support.

Also, the Orlu Political Consultative Assembly, Imo State Monday submitted a petition against the nomination of Chief Ugwuh, saying it would be unfair for the governor and the minister to come from the same Okigwe senatorial district.

According to Chief Elvis Agukwe who submitted the petition to the senate president, Ugwuh’s nomination was against the charter that provided for equitable distribution of political offices, to ensure fair representation.
Chukwumerije’s enlisting is coming on the heels of another protest against Maduekwe from a group known as Abia Progressive Union.

Addressing a press conference Monday at the National Assembly, leader of the group, Elder Emmanuel Adelu, called on the Senate not to confirm the former Transport Minister.
Cataloguing reasons for the group’s objection, Adelu said: "The nomination of Chief Ojo Maduekwe, from the old Bende zone, violated not only Section 14 (3) of the 1999 Constitution but also Article 7(2) of the PDP Constitution. Chief Maduekwe had at different times since 1999 been Minister for Culture and Tourism, Transport Minister, Special Assistant to former President on Legal Matters and currently Secretary of the PDP.

"By sheer numerical strength and economic endowment, Ukwa/ Ngwa is expected to command more influence and authority in the affairs of the state and representations in the federal appointments but the reverse has been the case since the birth of Abia State," the group said.
But a group under the aegis of Kogi State Consultative Assembly (KSCA) has said the upper legislative chamber should ignore protests against one of the nominees, Aduku, from Kogi State.

The group in a statement signed by its protem secretary, Chief Joel Attah, said Aduku was one of the three persons shortlisted for ministerial appointments from the state who was picked by the president and whose nomination was without any ethnic consideration but merit.
The statement said Aduku had always contributed to the progress of the party since it was founded in 1999. These contributions, the statement said included his recommendation of the 13 per cent derivation formula during the 1994/95 national constitutional conference, his conceptualization of the current logo and flag of the PDP.

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Okfold(Sobe, Edo, Nigeria)says...

I want the meaning of female owan name Ekeke (Edo state)

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Toluwalase Samuel Olufemi(Ijebu, Ogun, Nigeria)says...

Authority belongs to God, once He decrees it is final and binding

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Ikponmwosa Osamede(Edo, Nigeria)says...

Your meaning of Osamede is wrong. Osamede means God has given me a crown