Despite the clamour for their withdrawal, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, on Wednesday, said President Muhammadu Buhari will not withdraw some nominees for the position of INEC Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) recently accused of corruption and partisanship.
Recall that President Buhari had on 26th of July sent 19 names to the Senate for confirmation as RECs.
Four of the nominees appointed by the President were fingered by some Nigerians and a coalition of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) as partisan or have a known history of corruption.
The four nominees are Muhammad Bashir (Sokoto), Sylvia Agu (Enugu), Pauline Onyeka (Imo) and Queen-Elizabeth Agwu (Ebonyi). While Mr Bashir was named to have participated as APC governorship candidate in 2015 elections, Ms Agu was linked to the South-east deputy national chairman of the party.
The CSOs, at their press conference, said Ms. Onyeka, a former Head of ICT for INEC in Imo, has a history of “connivance with politicians to circumvent elections in the State”. Ms. Agwu, a former Accountant-General in Ebonyi State, was allegedly suspended on the grounds of corruption in 2016.
At the time of filing this report, could not independently verify all the allegations levelled against the four REC nominees.