Published On: Fri, Jul 12th, 2019

Six Weeks After Swearing In, Buhari Says He’s Under Pressure Over Ministerial List, Vows To Appoint People Personally Known

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President Muhammadu Buhari

By Victor Udoh – President Muhammadu Buhari said Thursday night that he would not succumb to pressure on the choice of his next ministers, vowing to pick persons that l personally known to him.

Mr. Buhari said most of the ministers that he worked with in his first tenure were persons he was not familiar with until after their appointment.

The President spoke at the meeting held with leadership of the National Assembly at the new Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on Thursday night.

Mr. Buhari was sworn in on May 29 this year following his victory at the poll in March.

Despite over six weeks after his inauguration, the president said he was under intense pressure to constitute the Federal Executive Council (FEC).

“Many at this dinner meeting are saying they want to see the list of the proposed cabinet so that they can go on leave peacefully.

“I’m very much aware about it; I’m under tremendous pressure on it. But the last cabinet which I headed, most of them, the majority of them I didn’t know them. I had to accept the names and recommendations from the party and other individuals.

“I worked with them for three and half years at least – meeting twice or two weeks in a month. So, I know them.

“But, this time around I’m going to be quiet me – me in the sense that I will pick people I personally know,’’ he said.

In a maiden meeting with the leadership of the National Assembly, Buhari also said that only those tested and capable of delivering on assigned mandates will make the ministerial list.

He however said despite the pressure, only those with track records, honesty and credibility would be appointed.

He, therefore, enjoined the lawmakers to partner with the executive arm in leaving good legacies for the country as his administration was on its last lap.

The president advised the National Assembly to always avoid comparing their parliamentary procedures with that of advanced democracies such as the United States and the United Kingdom.

The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, who spoke to State House correspondents after the meeting, refuted media report quoting him as saying that President Buhari would submit the ministerial list to the senate this week.

“Let me take the opportunity to correct that. A senator raised a point of order under personal explanation.

“He said we should be sent the list of the ministers by the executive arm of government and in my response I said the executive is working so hard to ensure that the list of Nigerians that will help this administration work is going to be transmitted and we could even receive it this week.

“We could’ is conditional and I will urge everybody here to report it as it is,” he said.

The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole and other presidential aides also attended the meeting.

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