The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Anyim Pius Anyim, on Tuesday queried Chairman of the National Population Commission (NPC), Festus Odimegwu for engaging in media war with Governor Rabiu Kwakwanso of Kano.
Governor Kwakwanso had described the appointment of Mr. Odimegwu as a mistake. He spoke with State House correspondents on Friday after meeting with President Goodluck Jonathan.
The Governor said he protested to President Jonathan that it was wrong for BPC Chairman to have rubbished the last census rather than coming up with to improve on the lapses noticed in the 2006 census since another one is due in 2016.
“I was invited by the President and I had very fruitful discussions with him. I also raised the issue of the Chairman of the National Population Commission headed by Festus Odimegwu.
“And we are not happy about that appointment, and think that it was a mistake. Odimegwu shouldn’t be there in the first place, because, when we were together, somebody read his CV.
“Even if it was wrong, he now has good opportunity to correct but instead of doing that, he has been running around to discredit the 2006 census. That means he is trying to kill that one.
“And in our own opinion, as long as he is there, he has already killed the 2016 census before it starts. And I believe that is not correct and that is not fair”, Governor had said.
But, rather than allowing the sleeping dog lying, Mr. Odimegwu also chided Governor Kwakwanso for calling his appointment a mistake.
The NPC Chairman of Public Affairs Committee, Mrs. Oluseyi Aderinokun-Olusanya, who obviously spoke on behalf of the Commission’s chairman, had reacted this way, “the governor’s call for the sack of NPC chairman was diversionary, ill-advised and a reckless attempt to politicize the yet-to-be conducted 2016 census.”
Aderinokun-Olusanya, stated further “While it may be understandable that Governor Kwankwaso feels threatened because Kano State had the highest population figures in 2006 census, however, Odimegwu’s comment on the inaccuracies in past censuses was not in reference to the population of Kano or any part of the country.
“He has consistently maintained that the falsification of figures during the 2006 census took place in every part of the country.
“It is curious that Kwankwaso had suddenly realized that the appointment of Eze Festus Odimegwu as chairman of NPC was a ‘mistake’ when in a personally signed letter dated June 28, 2013, the governor had solicited the technical assistance of the Odimegwu-led Commission for the Kano State house-numbering and street-naming and provision of identity card project”.
It was gathered that the Presidency frowned at the effrontery of the NPC chairman, Mr. Odimegwu to have replied the Governor hence, the resolve to query him.