No fewer than 10 individuals and groups had presented various petitions to the Senate through its Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Petitions against the 21 ministerial nominees presented for screening by President Muhammadu Buhari.
Investigations by one of our correspondents on Wednesday revealed that apart from the petition against the former Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Amaechi, which was submitted to the Senate in plenary, other Nigerians had forwarded no fewer than nine others to the committee.
A member of the parliamentary staff, who works closely with the committee, told one of our correspondents, on condition of anonymity, that the petitions had been properly documented for consideration.
The source said, “I don’t really know the accurate number of petitions we have received so far, I am not in the office at the moment but they should be up to 10.”
The Committee chairman, Senator Samuel Anyawu, did not speak on the issue when one of our correspondents called him on the telephone on Wednesday evening.
He said, “I will speak with you later please, I am sorry.”
Meanwhile, the Presidency on Wednesday said it would take its time before reacting to the various criticisms trailing the Tuesday’s announcement of President Buhari’s ministerial nominees by the President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki.
Saraki had at plenary announced 21 names as contained in the ministerial list sent to him on September 30, saying the screening of the nominees would commence on Tuesday, October 13.
But the announcement attracted criticisms with many saying the names on the list did not worth the wait for four months before making the names public.
When contacted, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, said the Presidency was aware of the criticisms.
Shehu said the Presidency would however not react yet because it expected that many more criticisms would still follow.
He said, “We will react to the various criticisms at the appropriate time. We are aware of the criticisms and we expect that more will still follow. We will react to all of them at the same time.”
Already, some people from the states where some of the nominees hail from have started kicking against their nomination.