Attahiru Jega has handed over the chairmanship of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to Mohammed Wali, a national commissioner of the electoral body from the north-west. Jega handed over to Wali at the INEC headquarters in Abuja. Six other national commissioners also ended their tenure.
They are: M.K. Hammanga, Adamawa state, (northeast); Ishmael Igbani, Rivers state, (south south); Lai Olurode, Osun state, (south west); Gladys Nwafor, Abia state, (south east); Thelma Iremiren, Delta state, (south south); and Nuru Yakubu, Yobe state, (north east).
While his five-year tenure lasted, Jega conducted two general elections in 2011 and 2015 and the elections were adjudged to be better than some of the previous ones.
Last week, Jega, a former vice-chancellor of the Bayero University Kano (BUK) and a former president of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), said he would be returning to the classroom after leaving INEC. The tenure of the new acting chairman will end on August 11, 2015.
An indigene of Sokoto state, Wali obtained his first degree from Usman Danfodiyo University, Sokoto and an MBA from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaira. He was elected into the senate in 1999 and was appointed to committees on selection, senate services, public accounts, defense and federal character.
Wali also served as the senate leader between June 1999 and November 1999. In 2003, he contested the governorship election under the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Former president Olusegun Obasanjo appointed him minister for the national planning commission (NPC) and later deputy chairman in 2007. He has also served as Nigeria’s ambassador to Morocco.