By Omololu Ogunmade in Abuja
Senate President Bukola Saraki yesterday ordered the National Assembly Commission to immediately reverse last Wednesday’s appointment of Mr. Mohammed Sani-Omolori as Acting Clerk of the National Assembly.
This order was contained in a letter signed by Senator Isa Galaudu, Chief of Staff to the Senate President, titled: “Withdrawal of letter of appointment of Acting Clerk of the National Assembly,” dated 22nd April, 2016.
The letter was addressed to the Executive Chairman, National Assembly Service Commission, Dr. Adamu M. Fika, who had announced the appointment of Sani-Omolori on Wednesday as the replacement for Alhaji Salisu Maikasuwa who is scheduled to proceed on terminal leave onMay 14, 2016.
The appointment of Sani-Omolori, however, came as rude shock to both the staff and members of National Assembly as Sani-Omolori who is the current Clerk of the House of Representatives is a junior officer to Mr. Benedict Efeturi, the Deputy Clerk of the National Assembly.
Saraki’s letter said the commission must follow due process by ensuring that the appointment of a new clerk was done on the basis of seniority.
The letter read in part: “We present to you the compliments of the President of the Senate and Chairman of the National Assembly, Distinguished Senator (Dr.) O. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, CON. Please recall that during your last meeting with the President of the Senate on April 20, 2016, the procedure of the appointment of the Acting Clerk of the National Assembly was discussed.
“The Commission was directed to follow due process and ensure that seniority is adhered to. Of course, Mr. Benedict Efeturi who is Deputy Clerk of the National Assembly (DCNA) and who has previously acted as the Clerk of the National Assembly should be the first to be considered”, he said.
“Most importantly, you have been directed to confer with the President of the Senate the outcome of the Commission’s meeting before a letter of appointment is issued and regrettably that did not happen.
“The President of the Senate and Speaker of the House of Representatives were informed that Mr. Efeturi was not considered for the appointment because he was not duly appointed as Deputy Clerk of the National Assembly. On further enquiries, we found he was duly appointed by the National Assembly Service Commission.
“Consequently, I am directed by His Excellency, the President of the Senate, to inform you that the letter appointing Mr. Sani Omolori as Acting Clerk of the National Assembly be withdrawn immediately for further consultations.”
The failure of the National Assembly Service Commission to follow the order of seniority in the appointment of the acting clerk had earlier been described as “an affront to the guiding principles of appointment and promotion in the National Assembly.”