Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari has appointed a dead man into office, naming the late Tobias Chukwuemeka Okwuru as a board member for a government agency, two months after he died.
Mr Buhari sent a letter to the country’s senate on Tuesday to confirm the list of 37 appointees but was unaware that Mr Okwuru had passed away in February.
Mr Eze Nwachukwu, the Ebonyi Chairman of the party told news conference on Wednesday that Chief Tobias Okwuru was hale and hearty at the time he was nominated for the position by Mr President.
According to Daily news, Mwachukwu said that the nominee unfortunately passed on in February between the period he was awaiting to be screened and confirmed by the Senate.
The chairman therefore urged the public to discountenance the mischievous reports.
“Okwuru was nominated ‘a living man’ in January, healthy, hearty for the position and he updated and submitted all his necessary curriculum vitae by himself.
“What happened is that in-between his nomination and letter conveying his nomination to the Senate, Okwuru painfully and sadly answered the ultimate call.
“We accept responsibility and take the blame because as a party we are supposed to have written the national leadership of our party and the Presidency informing them on the demise of Chief Okwuru as a ranking party member.
“But unfortunately, the family has not made the death official and has not commenced burial arrangements before the Coronavirus pandemic that led to lockdown, ban on burial and other social gatherings.
“So, it is the responsibility of the party to put the record straight and that is why we are using this medium to correct the erroneous impression.
“It is not the fault of Mr President and the Presidency that Okwuru’s name later appeared in the nominees’ list.
“It is the fault of the party in Ebonyi for not informing relevant authorities on the death and we accept full responsibility whole-heatedly even though it is not intentional or deliberate, but rather caused by what I have enumerated above.
“We want to put it clear that that Mr President has not appointed any ‘dead man’ from Ebonyi,” Nwachukwu said.
This is not the first time Mr Buhari’s presidency has made the grave error of appointing a dead person. In 2017, the president appointed at least five people who were long dead on to several boards of government agencies.