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More Nominees Reject Buhari’s Appointment

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Another nominee of President Muhammadu Buhari for the post of non-career Ambassador, Usman Bugaje, has explained why he did not accept the President’s offer, just as Akintunde Akinwande, the Presidential nominee for the post of Chairman of the National Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, has also declined the offer.

Bugaje, from Katsina State, had refused to speak to the media on his refusal to accept the ambassadorial nomination, but on Wednesday, he took to his social media page to explain his stance.

The post read: “Regarding the published nomination for an ambassadorial posting, I have not spoken to the press and may not do so anytime soon.

“I thank those who think me fit for the job, but I have so much in my hands already, especially the Arewa Research and Development Project (ARDP), which is the only broad platform in the north driving development.

“I have weighed the options and have decided to remain home and continue the struggle for development and good governance,” Bugaje explained.

His explanation came just few days after another ambassadorial nominee, Pauline Tallen, rejected her nomination, arguing the need for political appointments to be well-spread among the parts of the state for equity and balance.

Tallen also cited lack of proper consultation as well as her husband’s failing health as reasons for rejecting the post.

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In the case of the nominee for the chairmanship position of NERC, Akinwande, he was reported to have failed to appear before the Department of State Security, DSS, for a security screening as was customary with such nominations.

THISDAY newspaper reported that his absence at the screening could be an indication that he was rejecting the nomination.

The chairman of the senate committee on power, Enyinnaya Abaribe, said that the presidency should have ascertained the willingness of the nominee, especially as the nomination was made almost three months ago.

The committee had to suspend the screening exercise as, according to Abaribe, it was impossible to screen other nominees in the absence of the chairman-designate.

The chairman further said that the privatisation of the electricity sector was meant to improve the power sector and the inauguration of the NERC board was key in playing a major role to that end.

“Regrettably, when members of the committee assembled to screen the nominees made by President Buhari… the presidential liaison who brought the nominees informed us that the chairman was unavoidably absent,” he said.

“The commission is vital and cannot function without a chairman.”

Other nominees to the NERC board are Sanusi Garuba, vice chairman nominee, Nathan Shatti, Moses Arigu, Dafe Akpeneye, Frank Okafor and Musiliu Oseni.

In a meeting with President Buhari on Monday, governors of the All Progressives‎ Congress, APC, extraction expressed their concerns at the improper consultation before appointments were made, but the president tasked them to put their complaints in writing, promising to look into it.

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