The purported ministerial list that surfaced online earlier this week has finally been addressed by the President-elect, Muhammadu Buhari.
Speaking in an interview with Daily Trust at his Daura country home, Buhari detached himself from the ministerial lists which went viral on social media.
The president-elect insisted that he will not follow the custom of the outgoing party, the Peoples Democratic Party who from 1999 till date call for names for ministerial appointment from governors,
According to Buhari, if the state governors are at liberty to appoint their commissioners, he, too, should be at liberty to choose those who would serve with him.
Buhari said, “I am not speaking about it; I have not put anything on paper, so nobody has seen it and I haven’t discussed it with anybody; I am just keeping it close to my chest.
“I am ardent listener of Hausa Service of Voice of America (VOA) and the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) from 6am to 7am every morning. I am going to quote myself because I heard in one of the interviews that I said the type of people I am supposed to appoint, like in the cabinet and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, and service chiefs, will be different. Definitely my approach is going to be different from what we had under the PDP where governors nominated ministers.”
Speaking on the standard of people that would populate his cabinet, Buhari said “I have been around long enough to know people that I can approach for things like that… Deliberately we will look for competent people, dedicated and experienced to head ministries and, of course, there will be schedules for ministers and we will expect them to fill them. Economically we will try and stop a lot of wastages and encourage austerity so that we can fund the ministries”.
He noted that in the incoming administration, “Education and healthcare will get more attention. Of course, security is Number One. Certainly, there is a lot to do but we are hoping that we‘ll get good people to be in charge of ministries who can apply themselves to their responsibilities so that in no time Nigerians would begin to see the difference.”
General Muhammadu Buhari’s victory at the polls may have proceeded well for governors under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), but following a recent show-down with the president-elect, things are beginning to head south.