The Senate has rejected the confirmation of Lauretta Onochie as a National Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Chairman of the Committee, Kabiru Gaya, in his report on Tuesday, said Onochie did not satisfy the provisions of the Federal Character Principles.
The Senate at the committee of the whole subsequently voted against her nomination.
Onochie, during the screening had denied her membership of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) three times.
Onochie, who appeared before the Senate Committee on INEC, said she parted ways with the APC and stopped her volunteer work with the Buhari Support Organisation (BSO) in 2019.
She said those opposed to her nomination were after her because of her “due process stance” and belief in the rule of law.
President Muhammad Buhari had, on October 12, 2020, nominated Onochie (Delta), Professor Muhammad Sani Kallah (Katsina), Professor Kunle Cornelius Ajayi (Ekiti), Saidu Babura Ahmad (Jigawa), Prof. Sani Muhammad Adam (Northcentral) and Dr. Baba Bila (Northeast) as National Commissioners of INEC.
In her opening remarks, the presidential aide said she was aware of petitions against her, especially those about her membership of the APC and the fact that someone from her state was already on INEC’s board.
She admitted being part of the Buhari campaign organisation in 2015 before her appointment as Special Assistant on Social Media.
Onochie also admitted to having sworn to an affidavit at a Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court in Abuja that she was a member of the APC.
The presidential aide claimed she stopped being a member of the party after the 2019 polls.
She said: “I have learnt over the years to stand with the constitution and due process but not on partisanship or sentiments.
“Since 2019, I have not had anything to do with any political organisation, including Buhari support groups. When APC was doing re-validation of party members, I did not take part in the exercise.
“As I’m sitting down here, I’m not a member of any political party in this country. I’ve no partisanship in my blood.”