Omeiza Ajayi, Abuja
Ahead of the forthcoming series of primary elections in the ruling All Progressives Congress APC, President Muhammadu Buhari has clarified his earlier directive to all federal government appointees to resign their appointments by next Monday.
The move is in line with the relevant provisions of the Electoral Act 2022 (as amended).
The president had at the Federal Executive Council FEC meeting of Wednesday directed his appointees who have indicated interest in vying for elective positions to resign by Monday.
However, there was confusion in certain quarters regarding the fate of the appointees who are not cabinet members.
But in a circular dated 11th May, 2022 ams issued in the early hours of Thursday by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation SGF, Mr Boss Mustapha, the president said aside ministers, those equally affected by his directive are Heads of Extra-Ministerial Departments, Agencies, Parastatals of Government, Ambassadors and other appointees with political ambitions in the lead up to the elections.
The circular reads; “Mr. President has observed and noted the expression of interest and intention by some members of the Federal Executive Council, Heads of Extra-Ministerial Departments, Agencies, Parastatals of Government, Ambassadors and other Political Office holders to contest the upcoming Presidential, Gubernatorial, National and State Assemblies’ elections.
“Consequently, Mr. President has directed that the affected office holders aspiring to run for various offices in the 2023 General Elections, should tender their resignation on or before Monday, the 16th of May, 2022.
“For the avoidance of doubt, this directive affects all Ministers, Heads and Members of Extra-Ministerial Departments, Agencies and Parastatals of Government, Ambassadors as well as other political appointees who desire to contest for elective offices. For smooth running of the machinery of government and our foreign Missions, affected Ministers are to hand over to Ministers of State where they exist or to the Permanent Secretary, where there is no Minister of State. Ambassadors shall hand over to their Deputy Heads of Mission or the most Senior Foreign Service Officer in line with established practices.
“Similarly, Heads of Extra-Ministerial Departments, Agencies and Parastatals are to hand over to the most senior Director/Officer as may be peculiar to the organisation, in line with the service wide Circular No. SGF.50/S. Il/C.2/268 of 4th December, 2017.
“The contents of this circular and the incidental directives, takes effect immediately”.
The circular with reference number SGF/OP/l/S.3/Xll/173 was copied the Chief of Staff to the President, Deputy Chief of Staff to the President, Office of the Vice-President, Ministers/Ministers of State, Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, National Security Adviser, Chairman, Federal Civil Service Commission and Chairman, Federal Character Commission.
Also copied were the Chairmen, Independent National Electoral Commission INEC, Revenue Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission, National Population Commission, Code of Conduct Tribunal, Code of Conduct Bureau, Permanent Secretaries, Special Advisers/Senior Special Assistants, Service Chiefs/lnspector-General of Police, Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria, Chairman, Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission, Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, as well as the Chairman, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency.
Others include the Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service, Chairman, National Assembly Service Commission, Clerk of the National Assembly, Chief Registrar, Supreme Court of Nigeria, Secretary, National Judicial Council, Auditor-General for the Federation, Accountant-General of the Federation, Heads of Extra-Ministerial Departments/Directors-General/Chief Executive Officers of Parastatals, Agencies and Government-Owned Companies.