The North-East caucus of the All Progressives Congress in the National Assembly on Wednesday threw their weight behind President Muhammadu Buhari, who has received flaks of recent for the appointments he has so far made.
A cross section of Nigerians accused the president of being sectional in his appointments, arguing that about 75 per cent of appointments so far made favoured northerners.
One of such critics, Governor Ayodele Fayose, said Mr. Buhari was carrying himself as if he was a “northern president”, not the president of the entire country.
However, the caucus, in a press conference yesterday in Abuja, said the uproars over the appointments were unnecessary.
Senator Danjuma Goje (APC, Gombe Central), who spoke on behalf of the caucus, said critics of the President were being unfair.
He explained that competence, integrity, trust, etc, were the yardsticks used by the president to constitute his team.
Goje, who was a two-term governor of Gombe State, argued that being a father to all Nigerians, President Buhari did not consider ethnic, religious or regional sentiments in appointing members of his kitchen cabinet.
He said, “Fellow Nigerians, it is high time we got it right, it is not about where a man comes from but about what he can deliver especially in the interest of his people.
“President Barack Obama started with over 20 of his Harvard classmates and David Cameron of Britain started with most of his schoolmates. This has in no way made the news in those countries because they had their eyes set on bigger national picture”.
The senator noted that upmost care was paramount in the appointments of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, and Chief of Staff to the President because of the factor of closeness and trustworthiness.
Goje also said, “Back home here in Nigeria, we recall that most key appointments in the last administration, especially that of the Chief of Staff to the President, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Special Adviser on Media, Special Adviser on National Assembly Matters and other key appointments were from the southern region and nobody made huge cry about it.
“Thus, we appeal to Nigerians that this administration is just about hundred days old and there are thousands of other appointments to be made by Mr. President, where the needed balance will be effected as the President is not out to marginalise any section of the country.
“If we must move forward, we need to make a choice, either we decide on an ethnic-free future and move on to greater heights or we continue to hold on to ethnic sentiments, state-ism and zoning and remain backward”.
This, he said, was the reason why members of the North-East caucus of the APC considered it necessary to clarify issues and appeal to Nigerians to show a greater commitment towards the growth and sustenance of our democracy.