INEC Chairman Steps Down, Awaits Senate Confirmation

Yakubu said he couldn’t remain in office beyond November 9, the day he was confirmed, five years earlier.

Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission, Professor Mahmud Yakubu.
Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission, Professor Mahmud Yakubu.

The chairman of the Independent Electoral Commission, Mahmood Yakubu, has handed over the leader of the commission to AVM Ahmed Muazu, in anticipation of his confirmation for a second five-year term by the Senate.

In a brief handover ceremony on Monday, Yakubu said he couldn’t remain in office beyond November 9, the day he was confirmed, five years earlier.

He said, “You may recall that the current Commission was inaugurated in three batches. The Chairman and five Commissioners were sworn-in on 9th November 2015, followed by another six Commissioners on 7th December 2016 and one more Commissioner on 21st July 2018.

“The Commission is a constitutional body whose members are appointed for five years which may be renewed for a second and final term. This means that my tenure and that of the first set of five Commissioners ends today.”

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He said, “As you are already aware, the renewal of my tenure as Chairman of the Commission has been announced, subject to confirmation by the Senate. Our work as election managers requires us to enforce the law, regulations and guidelines.

“In doing so, we must demonstrate strict respect for, and compliance with, the Constitution of Nigeria and subsidiary laws. Consequently, it will be inappropriate for me to remain in office beyond today, 9th November 2020, without confirmation by the Senate and swearing to another oath of office as provided by law.”

Yakubu said, “Pending the conclusion of the statutory process, the remaining National Commissioners have resolved that AVM Ahmed Mu’azu (rtd) will oversee the affairs of the Commission.

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“It is therefore my pleasure to hand over to him in the interim. We have worked as a team for the last four years. Therefore, there is nothing new to anyone of them.”

Yakubu expressed appreciation for the support of the Commission members, the Resident Electoral Commissioners, the Secretary to the Commission, the Director-General of the Electoral Institute, Directors, members of the technical team, heads of the various security agencies deployed to INEC and all staff of the Commission nationwide.

Written by The Interview Editors

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