The Federal Character Commission, FCC, was established by Act No 34 of1996 to promote, monitor, and enforce compliance with the principles of the proportional sharing of all the bureaucratic, economic, media and political posts at all levels of government.
The Act inserted in section 14 (3) of he 1999 Constitution as amended to ensure that the composition of the government of the federation or any other agency of government and the conduct of its affairs are carried out in such a manner as to reflect the federal character of Nigeria and the need to promote national unity and also to command national loyalty, thereby ensuring that there shall be no predominance of persons from few states or a few ethnic or other sectional groups in government or any of its agencies. This enactment, the establishment of a commission to enforce it, with its enshrinement in the constitution show the emphasis that Nigerians have for their unity through constitutional tools. Administrations since 1999 observed this constitutional principles with varying levels of fidelity.
However, since 2015, when President Muhammadu Buhari came to power, the principle has been strengthened. This assertion can be verified by the performance of the present chairman of the commission, Dr Muheeba Farida Dankaka; her implementation and monitoring reforms have ensured about 90 percent compliance. This has made many to stress that institutions like the Federal Character Commission can be better managed to achieve its mandate by able leadership. She has intervened by hearing the voices and complaints of Nigerians clearly by upholding the constitution and the law. She does not condone nepotism which is capable of creating an atmosphere of discontent, hatred, disloyalty, disenchantment and separatist reflexes among victims. Dankaka’s leadership of the FCC, so far, has never been found wanting of any constitutional breach. The chairman has ensured that the mandate given to her by Mr President is achieved.
The question, therefore, is, what has the chairman done wrong that she has consistently been vilified by faceless insiders at the commission creating crisis time and over again when there is no basis for it? First, was the allegation of forged certificate of the chairman which was proven to be false. Second, was the issue of two northerners serving as chairman and secretary of the FCC at the same time, a claim that was made to cause crisis which its sponsors intended to use to vilify the chairman thereby truncating her reforms at the commission.Third, was the alleged non carrying along of the commissioners in the scheme of things at the commission and the contract sleeze by the chairman which all found to be false.
In continuation of the media war against the chairman, Nigerians woke up to a report in the Saturday Telegraph newspaper of an alleged crisis festering at the commission with the resignation of three commissioners over irreconcilliable differences with the chairman based on their personal principles.
According to the newspaper, the source of the story is a faceless and an unmentioned commissioner at the commission who would rather want to remain ananimous. The faceless commissioner also revealed the nomenclatures and states of the resigning commissioners as from Enugu and Kebbi. But the newspaper also revealed that the commissioners, denied the allegation. One of this alleged resigning commissioner disclosed that he is even out of the country and couldn’t have personally tendered his resignation or disclose this information to anyone. The second commissioner was surprised by the source of this false story.
The chairman of the commission has for the past two weeks been on official tour to the South-east alongside some commissioners and this was also disclosed by the director of communication at the commission. Plenary meeting was held on Wednesday where all the commissioners were present and nothing like the issue of intended or solicited resignation came up or was raised.
For the aviodance of doubt, Nigerians should by now have seen the lies and fake stories coming out of the FCC by some faceless groups as being a ploy to call a dog a bad name order to hang it. This chairman doesn’t deserve what she is getting from the nefarious activities of this sponsored faceless group. This is a woman who has been working assidiously to ensure that through the commission’s activities, our nation’s unity in diversity would be strengthened and enhanced and most importantly fulfil the president’s mandate. Security agencies must now have seen vividly the intentions of this faceless groups and it is expected that they wake up to their responsibilities of unmasking the these faceless actors and bring them to book.
Many people have now realised that the offence of the chairman is the fact that she hails from the North and that her radical reforms at the commission are bitter pills to swallow. It is important that everyone supports Dr Muheeba Dankaka for the FCC to achieve its mandate instead of peddling rumours and lies to bring her down.
The president is satisfied with the positive reforms at the commission and he is proud that he has enthroned capable leadership at the FCC. It is therefore adviseable to the sponsors of this fake and unsubstantiated stories to stop as their lies and intentions have been uncovered by Nigerians.