The appointment of a 27-year old pharmacist, Hannatu Mohammed, into the board of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) has caused a heated debate on Twitter.
At the core of the debate is Mohammed’s competence (or lack of it): On Saturday, May 11, a tweet was posted criticizing the appointment. It generated contrasting viewpoints.
Backdrop: President Muhammadu Buhari inaugurated eight members into the ICPC board alongside the current chairman, Professor Bolaji Owasanoye. Among the newly inaugurated members was Mohammed, who hails from Dutse, Jigawa state.
The case against her appointment: The main argument against her appointment is that her credentials are watery. Many people expected a more “accomplished” youth.
- There is also the question of whether she is a square peg in a round hole. She does not seem to have any reasonable experience around the core responsibilities of the ICPC.
The case for her appointment: Those in support of her appointment say no law was broken in appointing her. There is no particular requirement that a board member must have a great pedigree or experience. But there must be someone below 30 on the board and she fits that criteria. They argue that she could gain experience by sitting on the board.
The tribal argument: And then there are those who introduced a tribal dimension to the debate, as expected. Some argued that she was chosen because of her roots as a Northerner, alluding to the fact that the current administration gives preference to the North in making appointments.
- Others have said the only reason she is being attacked is because she is a Northerner, and her qualification (or lack of it) is just a pretext.
Bottom Line: Not much in this one. Mohammed meets the criteria. There are definitely far more experienced people than her but her qualifications so far does not make her incompetent. We’ll have to wait and see.