Northern youth, under the aegis of Northern Youth Assembly (NYA) have condemned criticisms against the re-appointment of Accountant General of the Federation (AGF), Ahmed Idris.
In a statement on Monday, signed by Comrade Mohammed Hussaini Bauchi,
Assistant National Publicity Secretary of NYA, the group said the AGF’s re-appointment is constitutional.
Bauchi said re-appointment of the AGF for a second term in June last year, was predicated under section 9(1),(2), (3) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), “where the President is empowered to appoint any person into any position of authority regardless of the age bracket.”
According to Bauchi, it is common knowledge that the AGF is currently serving as a political appointee but not a civil servant that should retire at the age of 60, noting that it was the constitutional provision that prompted the second appointment of the AGF through the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.
He further noted that section 171 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria had provided to the President, the powers to appoint a person of his choice as the Accountant General of the Federation for a tenure of four years in office, and such appointment may be renewed by the president, for another final tenure of four years.
Part of the statement reads as thus; “We have recently been following with keen interest the hot air balloon created by some selected and selfish labour unions in concert with some shadow political forces that, the current Accountant-General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris must be retired from office on account of reaching 60 years of age.
“While we understand that this is a deliberately created political smokescreen designed to spark unnecessary confusion about an issue that is already constitutionally very clear, we feel duty bound to set the records straight. It is quite obvious that this misleading campaign was inspired by old political prejudices, because the current AGF Ahmed Idris hails from the much despised Northern extraction
“It should be noted that, the appointment of the AG, is made under certain political, public and Judicial office holders. The question begging for an answer is this: what is the underlying agenda of this broad daylight campaign against an appointee who has been passionate about his responsibility, to the excitement of The Presidency, which ( in the first place) has the prerogative of appointing, removing him; reappointing him or replacing him out rightly?,” he asked.
Bauchi therefore stated that “we advise labour union and its affiliates to be wary of being used by politicians with selfish interests to dent the integrity. of dedicated appointees with a view to having the kinsmen of a certain region illegitimately occupy the same office.
“We urge the AGF and President Buhari not to be distracted by this diversionary campaign to stampede the AGF out of office and to inform the misguided civil service wagons that, re appointment of the AGF for another 4 year tenure remains the prerogative of the President, actions which are recognized by the highest laws of the land.
“And finally, we say enough is enough of this distraction at a point all hands should be on deck to confront the national challenges of insecurity and economic downturn occasioned by the Covid19 pandemic,” he said.