By Ikechukwu Okaforadi
The nominated Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele and the President, Court of Appeal, Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa, would be screened by the Senate today to confirm their appointment by President Goodluck Jonathan.
This was indicated yesterday at plenary, during which their screening exercise, listed on the order paper, was referred to the Senate Committee of the whole, which is the entire Senate plenary.
However, the nomination of Adelabu Adebayo Adekola for the position of Deputy Governor of the apex bank, which was sent along with that of Emefiele by President Jonathan last month, was referred to the Senate Committee on Banking and Currency.
Briefing journalists on the screening of the appointees, Chairman, Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Eyinnaya Abaribe, disclosed that live coverage of the two screenings will be carried out by the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) which according to him, will give Nigerians the opportunity to witness the exercise.
According to him, “I want to confirm that tomorrow (today), in line with the constitutional provisions and the Senate rules, we will do the screening and confirmation of President Goodluck Jonathan’s nominees: Hon. Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa as President of the Court of Appeal and Godwin Emefiele as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria.
“Both events will be aired live on the Nigerian Television Authority.
I am very certain that it will give Nigerians the opportunity to witness, firsthand, the screening of the two individuals that are very vital to both the dispensation of Justice in Nigeria and management of our economy”, he added.
He argued that there is nothing unconstitutional in the screening of the nominee for CBN governor in spite of the fact that vacancy for the position will be available in June when the tenure of the suspended governor will expire.
He said there is nowhere in the Constitution where it is stated that such a screening should be done at the end of the tenure of the incumbent.
“In fact, good sense means that we should screen somebody and go through all the processes so that on the date that the tenure of the incumbent ends, he could handover to his successor”, he Abaribe said.
“So we should not allow for lacuna in the process and that is why we are taking this process to make sure that there is no gap at all and of course, three months give us enough time for us to go through this process in such a way that whosoever Nigerians want as the new CBN governor, they will get it and will resume when the tenure of the current occupant ends”, he added.