Nigerian president names deceased to run government agency

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.

Matteo Natalucci

Matteo Natalucci is a geopolitics expert working as an Editor in London covering all aspects of international affairs and technology. Matteo previously worked for the United Nations, the European Commission, Thomson Reuters, Bloomberg, IHS Markit, and Global Data. Get in touch with the author: matteo.natalucci@internationalinsider.org
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