SENATE: Reconstitute Federal Character Commission

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The Senate has on her Tuesday’s sitting urged President Muhammadu Buhari to reconstitute the board of the Federal Character Commission (FCC).

This was heralded by a point of order raised by the senate minority leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe, who noted that the FCC board has lapsed since 2018.

The commission has been ran by an acting chairman since 2018 “who has now become a sole administrator.”

“No provision of the Act or the Constitution stipulates the need for the office of a sole administrator or an Acting Chairman. The Federal Character Commission (FCC) has been a tool for unity, equitable formula distribution and good governance of the Nation.

“Failure to reconstitute the commission amounts to a constitutional breach of the Act establishing the commission,” he said.

The Senate president, Ahmad Lawan, noted that the FCC is one of the national tools that work to ensure equity, unity, fairness and Justice in terms of employment distribution across all the 36 states of the federation and the FCT.

“It is very important we have the full complement of the Commission in place and I believe that with this resolution, it will expedite action to reconstitute the membership of the Commission,” he said.

The lawmakers urged Mr. president to “immediately constitute the Commission as not doing so amounts to a breach of the Act establishing the Federal Character Commission and the 1999 constitution (as amended).”

The call by the Senate is not first.

Abdullahi Shinkafi has been the Acting Chairman of the commission since 2018 and has operated overtime without members of the board.

This is against Section 2(1) of the Federal Character Act of 1995 which provides that members of the commission shall consist of a chairman who shall be the chief executive of the commission, a representative each of the states of the federation; and a representative of the FCT, Abuja.

Mr Abaribe’s concerns follows the start of investigation into alleged job racketeering in the FCC with jobs reportedly being traded for as much as N3 million.

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