Ambassadorial Nominees: 82-Year-Old Nominee Leaves Senate Stunned

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A dramatic scene was experienced on Wednesday when an 82-year-old Ambassadorial nominee appeared for screening before the Senate.

The Octagenarian nominee – Hon. Justice Sylvanus who is a nominee from Imo State was nominated by the Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo and forwarded to the Senate for screening and subsequent confirmation.

The peak of the mild drama during the screening was when Hon. Justice Sylvanus Nsofor, was asked a couple of questions, one of which was to recite the National Anthem by a member of the committee, ‎Senator Gbenga Ashafa (APC Lagos East).

The ambassadorial nominee staunchly argued with the lawmakers and refused to recite the anthem as requested. Exhausted by the back and forth argument, the lawmakers were utterly stunned at his blunt refusal, and were left with no option, but to ask him to take a bow and leave.

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Hon. Justice Sylvanus Nsofor, was born on March 17, 1935‎ in Oguta, Imo State. He was one-time Judge of the High Court of Nigeria, Justice of the Court of Appeal, and Lecturer in Law, Holborn College of Law,n London‎.

However, unlike the first nominee, the second nominee who was also screened – Mr. Adeyinka Olatokunbo Asekun responded to questions brilliantly to the amazement of lawmakers.

Adeyinka Olatokunbo Asekun

Mr. Asekun, who had a long stint as a retail banker in the banking sector, was educated at the Wisconsin University and California State University, both in the United States of America.

For instance, when asked how Nigeria could strengthen the Naira through‎ its foreign exchange policy, Mr. Asekun advised the federal government to embark on rebuilding the country’s export structure in the various countries.



Members of the committee who were impressed and satisfied with the responses of the nominee‎, asked him to take a bow and leave.

Recall that just after the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs had concluded screening the 46 non-career ambassadorial nominees early last month, Acting President Yemi Osinbajo added Adeyinka Asekun’s name to the list.

A list of the 46 nominees who were screened are;  Uzoma Emenike (Abia), Aminu Iyawa (Adamawa), Maj.-Gen. Godwin Umo (retd) (Akwa Ibom), Christopher Okeke (Anambra), Yusuf Tuggar (Bauchi) and Baba Madugu (Bauchi).

Others are Brig.-Gen. Stanley Diriyai (Bayelsa), Prof. Steven Ugba (Benue) and Baba Jidda (Borno), Etubom Asuquo (Cross River), Mr Frank Efeduma (Delta), Jonah Odo (Ebonyi) and Uyagwe Igbe (Edo).

Also screened were Eniola Ajayi (Ekiti), Maj.-Gen. Chris Eze (Enugu), Suleiman Hassan (Gombe), Justice Sylvanus Nsofor (Imo), Aminu Dalhatu (Jigawa), Ahmed Bamali (Kaduna), Deborah Iliya (Kaduna) and Prof. Dandatti Abdulkadir (Kano).

Haruna Ungogo (Kano), Justice Isa Dodo (Katsina), Mohammadu Barade (Katsina), Prof. Tijjani Bande (Kebbi), Prof. Y. O. Aliu (Kogi) Nurudeen Mohammed (Kwara), Prof. Mohammed Yisa (Kwara), Justice George Oguntade (Lagos) and Modupe Irele (Lagos) are among the nominees.

Musa Muhammad (Nasarawa), Ahmed Ibeto (Niger), Suzanne Folarin (Ogun), Jacob Daodu (Ondo), Afolahan Adeyemi (Osun), Maj.-Gen. Ashimiyu Olaniyi (retd) (Oyo), James Dimka (Plateau) and Haruna Abdullahi (Plateau).

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Orji Ngofa (Rivers), Sahabi Gada (Sokoto), Kabiru Umar (Sokoto), Hassan Ardo (Taraba), Goni Bura (Yobe), Garba Gajam (Zamfara), Bala Mairiga (Zamfara) and Ibrahim Ugbada (FCT) were screened.