By Ayobami Agboola, Osogbo
An Advocacy Centre, United Youth for Growth and Development has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to consider a Southerner as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Federal Character Commission (FCC).
The group argued that since the establishment of the Commission in 1996, there have been five chairmen and none came from the Southern Nigeria.
Addressing journalists in a press conference on Monday , the Executive Director of the group, Wasiu Adebiyi, asked Buhari to respect the principles of Federal Character and ensure that a Southerner heads FCC.
Reacting to a call by the Coalition of Civil Society Organizations (CCSOs) to appoint a southerner as substantive Secretary of the commission, Adebiyi said the South couldn’t continue occupying the secretaryship post claiming that it would be an injustice to the South.
It accused the Senate of sweeping petitions written against the appointment of the present FCC Chairman, Muheeba Dankaka under the carpet.
“A call was made and petitions written against the appointment of Dr. Muheeba Farida Dankaka who is from the North Central, but the Senate Committee under the leadership of Senator Ahmed Lawan swept it under the carpet and never considered any of the petitions.
“It is therefore germane to point out that Southern part of the country is not interested in the Secretary position but the Chairmanship whenever the vacancy occurs.
“We need to change this tradition of having FCC Chairman from the North and Secretary from the South,” he said.
Adebiyi noted that both Dankaka, and the Secretary, Muhammed Bello, whose tenure ends on Monday, are Northerner and urged President Buhari to consider a Southerner as Chairman.
“We need to prevent the predominance of members from major ethnic group in the political geo-entity by ensuring equitable distribution of powers and resources. This is the Purpose of Section 14 (3) & (4) of the 1999 constitution.
“The Secretary of the commission is the head of the Commission Secretariat, administration, direction and control of all employees but subject to the approval of the Chairman. He is neither a member of the Commission nor a decision or policy makers in the Commission.
“The big question is: What is the sin of the Southern part of the country which necessitated their denial of the Chairmanship position of the Commission since 1996?,” He queried.
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