Disgraced former Speaker, Salisu Buhari, is back to life

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Disgraced former Speaker, Salisu Buhari, is back to life

Disgraced former Speaker, Salisu Buhari, is back to life
June 04
10:01 2017

Thanks to acting President Prof. Yemi Osibajo, reprieve has come the way of disgraced former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Salisu Buhari. He was among the 42 people inaugurated into the board of the Nigerian Industrial Policy and Competitiveness Advisory Council last Tuesday. The council, comprising leaders from the private and public sectors, is expected to spearhead the industrial agenda that will boost the contribution of manufacturing to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 250 per cent over a five-year period, make her a manufacturing hub for West Africa and diversify the economy from its over-dependence on oil.

Nigerians have not forgotten so soon that Buhari, a Kano State legislator, emerged as Speaker at the outset of Nigeria’s Fourth Republic but was disgracefully impeached after it emerged that he had forged his certificate and falsified his age. Prior to his emergence as Speaker, he was already mired in controversy about whether or not he partook in the mandatory one-year National Youth Service Corps. But he scaled through. Then aged 29, when Section 65 Section 1(b) disqualified anybody under 30 years from contesting membership of the House of Representatives in the first place, Buhari had also lied about bagging a degree in Business Administration from the University of Toronto, Canada. After a teary apology, he vacated his exalted seat.

He, thereafter, went into political oblivion. However, his first political reprieve came in 2013 when President Goodluck Jonathan appointed him as a member of the governing board of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. The appointment was greeted with a groundswell of opposition. Then Special Adviser to the president on media and publicity, Reuben Abati, defended the appointment saying, “If you recall after that conviction, he not only apologised on the floor of the House of Representatives, the administration at the time subsequently granted him pardon. Pardon means you can no longer be punished for whatever offense you have committed. It means that your rights have been restored and you can again legitimately act for the society. The pardon says you can’t be shut out of the society. If you have opportunity again to serve your country, of course, you can be asked to be part of the process.” The appointment stood. Now, Prof. Osibajo has added icing to Buhari’s political cake.

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