Senate Stands Down Obanikoro Once Again

For the second time in one week, the Senate on Wednesday refused to deliberate on the ministerial nomination of Musiliu Obanikoro, former minister of State of Defence.

The Senate cleared four ministerial nominees and shifted debates on another three, including Obanikoro to next week.

The deferment was the second in one week for Obanikoro who is at the centre of an election rigging scandal.

David Mark, the Senate President, ostensibly delayed the exercise to save Obanikoro the embarrassment of being defeated by members of the All Progressives Congress, APC, who have vowed to block his candidacy.

Obanikoro was nominated the second time by President Goodluck Jonathan after he failed to clinch the Lagos State governorship ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. He is currently embroiled in the infamous Ekiti elections rigging audio tape crisis.

APC Senators have vowed to ensure that Obanikoro is not cleared to be a Minister, citing the Ekiti election rigging tape incident.

The Ekiti audio recording emerged early February highlighting Obanikoro’s participation alongside Governor Ayo Fayose of Ekiti; Iyiola Omisore; a man identified as Honourable Abdulkareem, and Jelili Adesiyan, the minister for Police Affairs.

The 37-minutes audio recordings and affidavit were provided by Sagir Koli, a Captain in the 32nd Artillery Brigade stationed in Ekiti State. Koli has since fled the country for fear of being killed.

Koli claimed to have recorded the conversation on June 20, 2014, when he was asked to accompany his Commanding Officer, Brigadier General Aliyu Momoh, to a meeting with the politicians.

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