The senior special assistant on media and publicity to President Muhammadu Buhari, Garba Shehu has said that Buhari is not the first president to have sent ministerial list to the Senate in batches wondering why people are crying wolf over it.
The presidential spokesman made this clarification in an interview with The Nation where he cited the examples of former presidents Olusegun Obasanjo, Umaru Musa Yar’adua and Goodluck Jonathan.
He said: “Let me be honest with you, in your own memory of this democracy, was there any President who gave you all the names of prospective ministers on day one? Former Presidents Olusegun Obasanjo, Umaru Musa Yar’adua and Goodluck Jonathan – they all presented ministerial nomination in batches. So, President Buhari is not doing something that has not been done before.”
He added that the appointment of ministers is not a child place as many would think as the president must balance the interest of all critical stakeholders prior to the announcement of ministerial nominees.
Commenting on why Buhari made the announcement of minister late even when he already had idea of those that he will love to work with, Shehu said that due to systemic decay coupled with what he called ‘rottenness in the system’ stating that there was no way the President Buhari could have built on such faulty foundation.
He added that it could be very easy for the president to constitute his cabinet in two or three weeks after inauguration but that would have mean the continuation of what he meant on ground.
“The President was concerned about the systematic decay; the rottenness in the system which he inherited and didn’t want to build upon. He said it would have been a grave mistake to have appointed ministers two, three days or one week after he had taken over. That would have meant a continuation of business as usual and unacceptable foundation that he found in place,” Buhari’s mouthpiece stated.