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Senate confirms Dahir-Umar as PENCOM DG despite Protests

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As Abaribe Kicks Against Confirmation of Umar

*** Rejects Hannatu Musa (North West), Commissioner, for failing to submit NYSCdischarge certificate.

By Henry Umoru

ABUJA- THE Senate, yesterday , confirmed the appointment  of Mrs Aisha Dahir-Umar as Director General (DG) of National Pension Commission (PENCOM) following the presentation of her name for Screening and confirmation by President Muhamnadu Buhari .

Also  confirmed were : Dr. Oyindasola Oluremi Oni (North Central) chairman; Clement Oyedele Akintola (South West) Commissioner; Ayim C. Nyerere (South East), Commissioner and Charles Efe Sylvester Emukowhale (South South) Commissioner.

The Senate however refused to confirm Hannatu Musa (North West) as a  Commissioner, for failing to submit her National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) discharge certificate.

Decisions of the Senate were sequel to the  consideration of the report of Senate Committee on Establishment and Public Service Matters, chaired by Senator Ibrahim Shekarau, All Progressives Congress, APC, Kano Central.

The committee said the nominees possessed the requisite qualifications for the PENCOM job and therefore recommended their confirmation.

However, before the nominees were confirmed, the Senate Minority Leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP,  Abia South once again kicked against the confirmation of Dahir-Umar, asking  the upper legislative chamber  to revisit the controversy surrounding her nomination.

Umar, from the NorthEast, has been serving as DG of the agency in acting capacity.

Abaribe  had earlier said Dahir-Umar’s nomination to replace the former Director-General of PenCom, Mrs. Chinelo Anohu-Amazu from Southeast was in breach of the Act establishing PENCOM.

Abaribe who had petitioned against her nomination to  the screening panel last week,  asked  it to stop action that could lead to the clearance of Dahir-Umar as DG of the agency.

Abaribe cited section 20 (1) and section 21 (1) and (2) of the National Pension Commission Act 2014, which state that, “in the event of a vacancy, the President shall appoint a replacement from the geopolitical zone of the immediate past member that vacated office to complete the remaining tenure”.

The Minority Leader  argued that the President has the right to appoint whoever he wills to occupy positions but such appointment should be done within the law.

Responding,  President of the Senate, Senator Ahmad Lawan who noted the section of the PENCOM Act cited by Abaribe did not apply to the current nominees, told the Minority Leader that there was no basis for his argument because the tenure of the board had lapsed before another nomination was made.

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Chuka (Webby) Aniemeka
Chuka (Webby) Aniemeka

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