Controversial Senator, Dino Melaye representing Kogi West, is in the news again, this time for kicking against the posthumous GCFR Award conferred on late billionaire business man, Moshood Kashimawo Olawale (MKO) Abiola by President Muhammadu Buhari; an award reserved for presidents and head of states. Read more here
According to him the highest honor of Grand Commander of the Federal Republic (GCFR) cannot be conferred on a person who is not a citizen of Nigeria and a dead man is not a citizen of Nigeria. He made this clear during the senate plenary on Thursday, 7th June 2018.
He went further to say that the president was contravening the constitution by conferring the GCFR Award on MKO posthumously. To support his stand, Dino Melaye cited Chapter 43(2) of the National Honours Act which does not allow for conferment of such an honour on non-Nigerians.
According to him, MKO is non-Nigeria because he is a dead man.
In his own words:
“Mr. President, we are governed in the country by the constitution and extant laws. No matter how beautiful a situation is, the law of the land remains the law of the land.
“Subsection 2 of the act says a person shall be eligible for appointment to any rank or holder unless he is a citizen of Nigeria. A dead man is not a citizen of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. We should not be emotional about this. The law remains the law.
“Subject to the next notice, a person shall be appointed to a particular rank of an order when the president receives him in person”.
He went further to say, “Mr. President, they said ‘in person’, for us to do what we are supposed to do, we would have to amend the provisions of this act because anything we need to do, we have to do in accordance with the provisions of the law.”