Senate screens 15 ambassadorial nominees
The Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs yesterday screened 15 ambassadorial nominees.
President Muhammadu Buhari had on June 9 forwarded the names of 47 career foreign service officers to the senate for screening and confirmation as the country’s envoys abroad. Those screened yesterday were; Vivian Nwunaku Okeke(Anambra), Enoch Pear Duchi(Kaduna), Ibrahim Isah (Niger), Hakeem Balogun(Lagos) Jane Ada Ndem (Benue) Sakirat Ogundero (Oyo), Lilian Ijeukwu Onoh(Enugu), Kenneth Nwachukwu(Imo) and Baba Garba (Kano).
Others were; Audu Ayinla Kadiri (Kwara), Rabiu Akawu (Kano), Salisu Umaru (Adamawa), Janet Omoleegho Olisa(Delta), Hassan Mohammed Hassan (Borno), Manaja Tulah Isah(Gombe).
Some however had difficulties reciting the National Anthem, Pledge and knowledge of the capital of Lagos State.
Apart from questions on diplomacy and foreign affairs, the senators asked the envoys to recite the National Anthem, Pledge, a number of states, six geo -political zones, names of presidential candidates in the 2015 general elections and names of the three senators from their states.
When the chairman of the Committee, Senator Monsurat Sunmonu, asked the nominee from Anambra State, Vivian Okeke, to recite the National Anthem, she omitted “One nation bound in freedom” in the last stanza.
Also, when she asked Ibrahim Isah , the nominee from Niger State to recite the National Pledge , instead of saying, “To defend her unity, and uphold her honour and glory” in 4th and 5th stanzas, he said, “to defend her unity and integrity”
Also, when the nominee from Benue, Jane Ada Ndem, was asked to name 12 states and their capitals, she gave the capital of Lagos as Lagos, and not Ikeja.
One of the nominees from Kano, Baba Garba also had issues with the recitation of the National Pledge.
Similarly, the nominee from Delta, Janet Omoleegho Olisa(Delta) when asked about the number of local governments in her home state, Delta, she said, “Honestly, I don’t know”.
Reacting, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly (Senate), Senator Ita Enang, who spoke at end of the session, said they recited the National Anthem and Pledge correctly. Senator Monsurat announced that the screening continues today.