Friday, 11 September 2015

Buhari’s ministerial list: Shock Awaits APC Godfathers

SHOCK awaits godfathers of All Progressives Congress (APC), as President Muhammadu Buhari is set to unfold the list of his ministerial nominees.

It was gathered that top leaders of the party, who had hints of the president's direction, were already alarmed.

It was gathered that contrary to the practice where the Senate President and Speaker of the House of Representatives would have nominees in the cabinet, the duo of the Senate president Dr Bukola Saraki and Speaker, Honourable Yakubu Dogara, had been kept in the dark over the ministerial list.

It was also gathered that names of  former governors who had been heavily touted in the early days of the administration had been replaced.

Investigations by the Nigerian Tribune confirmed that the president might have rejected several nominees from political heavyweights in the party, in his determined bid to cultivate a crop of new breed politicians, a legacy he hopes to leave behind in the Nigerian political space.

Nigerian Tribune also gathered that the president had personally composed his list of ministerial hopeful, with names of big time politicians missing.

While details of the names remained sketchy as of press time, sources said the list was consistent with Buhari's determination to ensure the emergence of his trusted allies and new breed politicians in the scene ahead 2019.

A source actually said the president had composed a list comprising those he described as political "minnows," adding that the bigwigs who were hopeful of making the list were in for a big shocker.

There are reports that the list was already with the Department of State Services (DSS), though sources close to the organisation could not confirm the development.

It was, however, gathered that the government had ordered that all avenues by which the list would get to the media before its unveiling by the Senate be blocked.

Officials of the DSS were said to be under strict order not to allow a slip, as anyone found to have leaked the list would face sanction.

The president had said in a media interview during the week that his appointments would go to his trusted hands, who had been with him through his sojourn in the APP, ANPP, CPC and APC.

Besides, the issue of loyalty is also a reason the president was determined to ensure a take-over of the polity by his crop of new breed politicians, who he believed would institute discipline and probity.

"The president has made it clear to his party leaders that he needs to put in place a team that would work for the people.

"He is also insisting on people with unblemished record of service. He had stated that he would not condone a public officer who would be going to court with official vehicles to defend corruption charges.

"This is the time to walk the talk and the feelers we are having is that he (Buhari) stuck to his guns," a source close to the party said.

It was gathered that in line with this determination to pick trusted hands, President Buhari rejected the quest of one of the governors to nominate someone who can perform wonders as minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The governor was said to have recently approached Buhari with a candidate he believed would perform well in Abuja and restore sanity to the Federal Capital, but it was gathered that Buhari told the governor that he already had someone in mind.

"The president has assured his party leaders that while sensitivity of the job of ministers would not allow him pick some of their favoured candidates some names could be considered for future assignments," a source said.