TINUBU’S MINISTERIAL LIST: NIGERIANS DESERVE BETTER THAN THIS ASSEMBLAGE OF SOME RECYCLED SPENT FORCES, ANTI-DEMOCRATIC ELEMENTS
… SUBMITTING MINISTERIAL NOMINEES LIST IN PIECEMEAL RATHER THAN IN FULL RUNS FOUL OF THE ELECTORAL ACT
The attention of the Labour Party has been drawn to the ministerial list as forwarded by the All Progressives Congress-led government to the Senate and which was unveiled on Thursday. It is therefore pertinent for us to put on record that the expectation of Nigerians were completely shattered.
Nigerians expected more quality, character, dynamic, and resulted-oriented Nigerians to be on that list, but what we saw is a recycling of some failed and clueless politicians who have contributed to bringing Nigeria to its parlous condition. Some of these nominees played prominent anti-democratic roles in the previous administration, particularly since 2015, which saw the APC government fail in all its promises to Nigerians.
We also saw “Prependal” politics in full swing where mainly the cronies and lackeys of the APC national leader were selected for a reward for servitude and blind discipleship. This list does not in any way reflect the enormous reservoir of talents, potentials, and resources Nigeria is known for. It still baffles us as to why this government ignored the youthful and technocratic potentials that abound but rather chose to appoint spent forces that have failed Nigeria in the past.
A glance at the list exposes the absence of technocrats who usually form the nucleus or core policy implementers in any given government and unfortunately in their place are fawning politicians who may not be of any help in the needed efforts in salvaging and repositioning the country for effective delivery, given the socio-economic condition of the people, given the challenges we have with the economy as well as in all other facets of life including security, health, education, and poverty reduction amongst others.
Assembling transactional and traditional politicians to man the government at this critical point would not give the expected result. The political class has failed Nigerians in the past and as the saying goes, we desire square pegs in square holes but that is far from what we are being served. We earnestly hoped that there would have been more young people who would be part of the government. At this point in our history, we need people with a track record, young people with energy who can transverse the country, think out of the box, and think all through the night without sleeping, to be able to provide solutions to numerous challenges confronting the nation.
Again, we are worried that the ministerial list is being presented piecemeal. The constitution of Nigeria clearly states that at least a minister must be appointed from each of the 36 states of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory. The Electoral Act as amended also stipulates that a list containing the ministerial nominees must be sent to the Senate within 60 days from the day of commencement of a government for screening and confirmation. But what we witnessed was a hurriedly prepared list that excluded nominations from about 10 states in clear violation of the laws of the land.
Sixty days is quite a lengthy period for any serious government to form its executive team. This development appears even more ridiculous because we know that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu has struggled to be president for over two decades and therefore should have been able by now to identify and have a solid team selected across the country that is qualified to hold ministerial positions. But this has not happened.
Had it not for the Electoral Act which compels a government to submit a ministerial list within 60 days, given what we are seeing, one wonders how long it would have taken the APC leadership to form the government. This is because it took the immediate past APC administration over six months to appoint its ministers in 2015. Nigeria cannot afford to be managed by a visionless and clueless leadership that does not understand the importance of haste in salvaging a crises-ridden nation like ours.
Labour Party will therefore in the days ahead seek proper legal counsel on the legality or otherwise of a piecemeal submission of the ministerial list as against the submission of the “Full” list as envisaged by the Electoral Act”. About 10 states will not have representatives in the Federal Executive Council meeting when it is convened. No state in Nigeria should be made to suffer for the ill-preparedness and incongruous attitude of this government.
▪︎ By Obiora Ifoh,National Publicity Secretary