Envious Persons Disqualified Me From Being Minister — Stella Okotete

Stella Okotete

Executive Director (Business Development), Nigeria Export-Import (NEXIM) Bank, Stella Okotete, has spoken about her disqualification as a Ministerial Nominee by the Senate.

Last year, Okotete was recommended to the Senate for screening and confirmation by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu as a ministerial nominee.

However, Senate did not clear Okotete, Nasir El-Rufai, former Kaduna State Governor, and Danladi Abubakar, a nominee from Tabara state, citing security reasons against their emergence.

Senate President Godswill Akpabio had said the upper legislative chamber was waiting for the security clearance on the three nominees.

Reacting via an online interview “Mic on Podcast” on Saturday, Okotete said the refusal of the Senate to clear her as a nominee was “purely political games.”

The former All Progressives Congress women leader said she would not have remained a NEXIM bank director if she was a security threat to the country.

According to her, she is not under investigation by any security outfit in the country.

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“I was not beaten out of the game of becoming a minister, I think some people tried to stop me from serving the country on a higher platform and they didn’t succeed,” she said.

“I’m sure, logically speaking, if I’m a security threat or I have security issues, I won’t still be the ED of NEXIM Bank.”

Okotete said those fighting her are doing so because of their fears that she may vie for the 2027 Delta governorship election.

While maintaining that there is no such intention to join the governorship race, she said: “Most of the people fighting Stella Okotete today are all out of envy. I will be 40 years old in April,” she said

“At 40, who can say they have seen through all the tiers of the government, from LG to state and the federal government?

“At 36, I was the national woman leader for the party and still the executive director of NEXIM. I’m sure in Nigeria, there is no woman who has held two positions of such, simultaneously.

“It is all envy. I have made impact. I understand their fears and worries. I even told those who cared to listen that I don’t have the intention.

“Some of the fears are about 2027. You know how these politicians think. I’m not vying for governor of Delta state.”

In 2020, Okotete was appointed as the national women leader of the All Progressives Congress’ Caretaker /Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC).