Nigerian president names deceased to run government agency
Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari, has appointed a dead man to a senior government post.
This is not the first time that the ageing leader appoints a deceased person to a public charge.
Buhari approved MP Tobias Chukwuemeka Okwuru – whose funeral took place in February – to the Federal Character Commission.
The issue emerged when a letter of confirmation from the president was read to the Senate.
Applications for the role were immediately reopened when journalists pointed out that MP Okwuru was deceased.
A spokeswoman for the Nigerian president gave the fault of the gaffe to the lengthy screening process.
This is not the first time that he appointed a deceased. In 2017 Buhari appointed at least five people who were long dead to the boards of government agencies.
Buhari, who was the country’s military commander for two years after a coup in the 1980s, has blamed the democratic process for slowing him down. “It’s not Baba that is slow but it is the system, so 1 am going by this system and I hope we will make it,” he said.
The 77-year-old Buhari, who has been re-elected in in February 2019, has been beset by ill health since taking office in 2015.
Rumours that the president had been replaced with a body double called “Jubril” from Sudan had been widely shared online. A former aide to Buhari’s predecessor, Goodluck Jonathan, is among the high ranking individuals who have promoted the rumours.
Buhari has firmly denied these rumours.