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Jonathan, Two Former Leaders, Attend Council of State Meeting

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President Muhammadu Buhari and Ex - President Goodluck Jonathan
File: President Muhammadu Buhari and Ex – President Goodluck Jonathan

Former President Goodluck Jonathan, ex-Head of State General Abdulsalami Abubakar and former Head of the Interim National Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan, are currently attending the Council of State meeting at the Aso Rock Presidential Villa in Abuja.

They are the only past leaders attending the meeting at the time of filing this report.

The meeting commenced at exactly 11.10am, and is also being attended by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal.

This is the second meeting of the Council of State convened by President Muhammadu Buhari, and the first to be attended by Jonathan since leavng office.

Senate President Bukola Saraki and House of Representatives Speaker Yakubu Dogara who are also members of the council are absent.

The meeting is expected to consider names of nominees to fill vacant positions of National and Resident Electoral Commissioners, RECs, at the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.

The INEC currently has six national commissioners out of 12, while 21 out of 37 Resident Electoral Commissioners are yet to be appointed.

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President Buhari is also expected to brief the council on the nomination of Ibrahim Idris as acting Inspector-General of Police. The Nigerian Police Council, NPC, is expected to ratify the appointment thereafter.

The Nigerian Council of State is an organ of the Nigerian government whose functions include advising the executive on policy making.

It  comprises the president as chairman; vice president (deputy chairman); all former presidents and all former heads of the government of the federation; all former Chief Justices of Nigeria; President of the Senate; Speaker of the House of Representatives; state governors and Attorney-General of the Federation.

The responsibilities of the council include advising the president in the exercise of his powers with respect to the appointments of  INEC commissioners, members of the National Population Commission, the National Judicial Council, prerogative of mercy and award of national honours.

The council also advises the president whenever requested to do so on the maintenance of public order and on such other matters as the president may direct.

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