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Women affairs minister appoints daughter as special assistant

The Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Pauline Tallen, has appointed one of her daughters, Violet Osunde, as a special assistant in her office.

It is not clear if the minister’s action violated any law, but critics including academics and lawyers said it suggests nepotism and could be a breach of her oath of office.

Until her appointment in November, Mrs Osunde was a senior executive assistant with the National Databank Management Department of the National Pension Commission.

Mrs Osunde, a 2010 graduate of Business Management and Information Technology from the University of Plymouth, England, also holds a Master’s certificate in Information System Management from Brunel University, London. She joined the National Pension’s Commission in 2016.

But criticisms have trailed the appointment with many Nigerians including lawyers, leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), and the spokesperson of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), describing the development as opportunistic and condemnable.

However, the minister has defended her action, saying she has the right to choose whoever she feels has the capacity to support her efforts towards achieving the mandate of her office.

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