The chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has said that the controversy surrounding a top official of the commission, Amina Zakari, a relative of Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari is a none issue.
When asked to clarify during a press briefing earlier in the week on allegations that one of its commissioners, Amina Zakari, who now heads the collation committee is related to the president, the chairman simply said: “she is not related to the president. She is from Jigawa State. The president is from Katsina State”.
The presidency earlier on Friday had clarified that Mrs Zakari was not related by blood to Mr Buhari.
“President Buhari and Commissioner Amina Zakari don’t share a family relationship. An inter-marriage occurred in their extended families, so the imputation of blood relationship between the President and the electoral commissioner is a simple lie,” Garba Shehu, Mr Buhari’s spokesperson said.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has agreed to allow its members work with the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, during the 2019 general election.
Biodun Ogunyemi, the ASUU president, made this known while briefing journalists after a meeting with INEC on Friday, January 4, 2019.
He said ASUU will not stop its members from participating in the election as temporary staff ”as that is part of their community service.”
“We placed on record that our relationship with INEC dated back to 2010 when Attahiru Jega was chairman. Even though we are not in the position now to do everything we were doing that time, we have assured them that we will not stand on the way of our members participating in the election as ad-hoc staff,” he said.
He said despite the ongoing strike by the union, it would not stop any of its staff from taking part in the electoral process.
He assured that ASUU will continue to work with INEC to further deepen the content and the process of elections in Nigeria.
Mahmood Yakubu, the INEC chairman, expressed delight at the position of the lecturers.
“We had a very successful meeting with the union, we are very happy with the assurance that we received from the union,” he said. “I am happy to say that as a result of this meeting, Nigerians should rest assured that 2019 general election is fully on course.”
He said the commission would secure collation and returning officers from the pool of university officials it has access to.
Additional reports by TheCable.