Fashola, Amaechi, Bala-Usman, Sirika to make list
Saturday Vanguard has reliably gathered that Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Kaduna State Governor Nasir El-rufai and the National Chairman of All Progressives Congress, APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole are currently playing key roles in the selection of ministerial nominees to ensure that competent party members are appointed.
It was gathered that the three strong men have the ears of President Muhammadu Buhari in his determination to appoint people, who would truly deliver in their respective portfolios. “But he (the President) is doing that separately and not as a team, so each of them may not know what the other is suggesting,” a source close to the Presidency said.
Multiple sources told Saturday Vanguard that the President was not only concentrating on competent party members but also on credible people in the private sector, who would drive the implementation of pro-people policies to be formulated.
One of the sources said the trio has identified some party members among who are the Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority, Hadiza Bala-Usman, immediate past Minister of Transport, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, former Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola, ex-Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, among others.
The source said: “President Muhammadu Buhari is considering merit this time because he wants results from his ministers. That was why he is listening to the Vice President, APC party chairman, and Governor Nasir El-rufai to assist in choosing competent hands among party members and from the private sector. He does not want noise makers but those who can do the job. The Managing Director of NPA, Hadiza Bala-Usman and Rotimi Amaechi may make the list because they possess the qualities needed. Another person is Fashola.”
Saturday Vanguard had reported that unlike the usual practice of placing party and other considerations above merit in the appointment of ministers, President Buhari’s cabinet members could emerge strictly on competence.
The development was informed by the perception of underperformance by most of the immediate past ministers, especially heads of key ministries, and in-fighting among junior and senior ministers which characterised the activities of the ministers.
These resulted in the absence of synergy that could have emanated from interministerial interface.
The situation informed sustained calls from the public for the rejigging of the cabinet and even outright sack of some ministers.
Such calls were not heeded by Buhari, who only witnessed the resignation of five ministers and the death of one.
The Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Khadija Abba Ibrahim, had resigned on February 16, 2019, to run for an elective office in Damaturu/Tarmuwa/Gujba/Gulani Federal Constituency of Yobe State.
Alhaji Ibrahim Jubiril also resigned his appointment as Minister of State for Environment following his declaration as an Emir.
Hajiya Amina Mohammed, on February 24, 2017, resigned as Minister of Environment following her appointment at the United Nations as Deputy Secretary-General.
The incumbent Governor of Ekiti State, Kayode Fayemi also resigned on May 30, 2018, to contest for the governorship position of his state.
Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Senator Aisha Alhassan, also known as Mama Taraba, resigned from the cabinet and from the APC, hinging her resignation on her disqualification in the screening for the 2019 Taraba State governorship election by the party’s National Working Committee.
In September 2018, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun resigned as the Minister of Finance as a result of allegations that she falsified her National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, Exemption Certificate.
In March 2016, Minister of State for Labour and Productivity, Mr. James Ocholi ,SAN, died in a road crash that occurred at Kilometre 57, along Kaduna-Abuja highway.
Some ministers gave a bad face to the President’s anti-corruption fight. But they survived. There were ministers who were even so petty that they applied and collected estacodes of aides for trips the aides never made. There were some who collected full estacodes and paid their aides half or even less. One aide even went public with corrupt activities in his ministry.
There were also some the Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC simply failed to investigate allegations brought against them. They all survived a Buhari administration that allowed the ministers so much freedom and didn’t do enough to monitor them. All that, we gathered, may change in this second coming they have tagged The Next Level even as some ministers may be retained while some may be re-assigned to other ministries.