Kabir Marafa, senator representing Zamfara central, says he is not a boy to Abdulaziz Yari, governor of the state.
Marafa said this while speaking on the rejection of Ahmed Mahmud, who was nominated by President Muhammadu Buhari as the Zamfara resident electoral commissioner (REC).
The senate rejected Mahmud on November 23 but resolved to reconsider him after Marafa’s intervention.
The matter was subsequently referred to the senate committee on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which is yet to submit its report.
Speaking on the floor of the upper legislative chamber on Thursday, Marafa said it was very clear that the opposition of the nominee is from the governor who had written a petition against Mahmud.
The senator said the petition is “null and void” because it was not accompanied with an affidavit in line with the rules of the upper legislative chamber.
“Mr President you directed the matter back to the committee for further legislative action. I took that wise counsel from you that the committee will do the needful even when I know that there is nothing they can add to what they have done because their report was quite explicit and extensive,” he said.
“Mr President, order 1 (27) says ‘in considering the appointment of a nominee, the committee shall not call to witness any person as a witness other than the nominee himself.
“However, there may be a memorandum submitted to committee, if any such memorandum should contain the names of the writer, a verifiable address, a clear and dated signature and it shall be accompanied by an affidavit.
“It is very clear that the only opposition to this nominee is coming from the governor of Zamfara state who wrote to the president that the nominee is not from Zamfara state but from Sokoto state. My distinguished colleague from Zamfara north stood on the floor to say the nominee is from Kebbi state.
“The committee did a very good job when they said the nominee was born in Gusau, went to school in Anka, he served as the commissioner of justice in Zamfara for four years. The governor wrote a petition, he has a right to write a petition but he cannot violate our order – his petition is not accompanied with an affidavit, therefore his petition is null and void.
“I want to state very clearly that the governor has no right, this is senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, we are not his boys, I am not his boy and this senate cannot be his rubber stamp. We are not holding somebody’s future because of his interest.”
Senate President Bukola Saraki said no action would be taken on the issue until the report of the INEC committee is submitted.
“Honestly, I sympathise with you but as you know parliament is a place of procedures. No matter how good the course may be, we must continue to respect procedures because that is the only way the institution will survive,” Saraki said.