Senate President, Bukola Saraki yesterday said the resolution of the Senate stopping the confirmation of President Muhammadu Buhari’s nominees has not been rescinded.
The Senate had on July 4 last year passed a resolution suspending further confirmation of the president’s nominations into public offices not captured in the Constitution.
The faceoff was over a statement by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on the acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr Ibrahim Magu.
Osinbajo had said Senate confirmation was no longer necessary, citing some sections of the constitution which he said override the EFCC Act. Twice, the Senate had rejected Magu’s confirmation.
The resolution on the confirmation reads: “That the Senate suspends all issues relating to confirmation of nominees from the executive until all issues of confirmation as contained in the constitution and laws of the Federation are adhered to.” The senate also demanded the withdrawal of the vice president’s statement on Magu.
The issue came up yesterday when Senator Mao Ohuabunwa (PDP, Abia) appealed to the Senate to screen and confirm appointees of the president for the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
Ohuabunwa who raised a point of order after Buhari’s letter on the NDDC budget was read by Saraki said the non confirmation of the nominees had shutout two states from the board of the commission.
Reacting, Saraki said any confirmation request of the president made after the resolution won’t be attended to.
“I am happy that you made reference to the fact that we all here at the Senate passed a resolution on this matter. The issue you just raised, we will look at it to see if the exercise itself started before the resolution.
“So the secretariat should check the records. If it had started before, we will look into it, but if it had started after, I’m sorry unless that resolution is rescinded, we are all bound by that resolution,” he said.
The confirmation quagmire has affected about 50 of the President’s nominees.
Some of the affected agencies are CBN, Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), Pension Commission (PenCom), Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC), National Lottery Regulatory Commission (NLRC) and Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA).
However, the screening of nine INEC RECs and Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) has commenced. They are not affected by the resolution.