The senator representing Osun Central District under the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, in the National Assembly, Ajibola Basiru, has protested against the lopsided appointment of members of the Governing Council, National Human Rights Commission, NHRC, by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Ajibola made his feelings known on Wednesday in Abuja during the screening of the chairman and members of the commission by the Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters, chaired by Senator Opeyemi Bamidele (APC Ekiti Central).

He particularly asked the President through his Senior Special Assistant on Legislative Matters (Senate), Senator Babajide Omoworare to always reflect the rule of federal character in his appointments so as to give a sense of belongings to all the geo-political zones of the country.

The lawmaker, who is the chairman, Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, lamented that while some states get two slots in the governing council, some didn’t have a single member, declaring that he is not in the Senate as an individual but as the representative of his people.

Ajibola, though added that his observation was personal, he sought the correction of such lopsidedness in future appointments by the President.

The Chairman of the committee, however, assured the aggrieved members that the issue raised will be addressed at the committee meeting before the submission of the report to the Senate next week.

During the screening, the committee acknowledged the outstanding performances of each nominee over the years, deep knowledge of human rights-related issues and the ability to answer questions put before them by the chairman and other members.

The screened nominees are the chairman, Salamatu Suleiman and Beatrice Jedy-Agba, Umar Zainab, Dafe Adesida, Joseph Mmamel, Ahmad Fingillia, Kemi Okeyanda, Abubakar Mohammed, Femi Okeowo, Sunny Daniel, Agabaidu Jideani, Nella Rabbana, Azubikwe Nwakwenta, Jamila Isah, Idayat Hassan, and Anthony Ojukwu, the Executive Secretary of the commission, as members.

It would be recalled that President Buhari had on March 24 via a letter requesting the confirmation of nominations of the chairman and members designate of the commission by the Senate.

The appointments were made pursuant to Section 3 (2) and (3) of the National Human Rights Commission (Amendment) Act 2010, with particular reference to submission (3) paragraph (a) and (b).

After deliberations of the requests, the Senate referred it to its committee for further legislative action and mandated it to screen the nominees and report back with recommendations.


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