From Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
The Presidency yesterday debunked recent media reports that President Muhammadu Buhari’s appointments are lopsided in favour of the North. The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, in a statement, said contrary to the claim that 81 of Buhari’s appointments are from the North, the appointments are spread across the geo-political zones. He described the report as ignorant effort or a mischievous attempt to mislead the public and portray the Buhari administration in bad light.
He further described as untrue and uncharitable, the report’s attempt to insinuate that the President’s appointments are tilted in favour of a section of the country. The presidential spokesman said the writer unilaterally selected 100 appointees to drive home the distraction presented as “facts.” According to him, “To claim, suggest or attempt to insinuate that the President’s appointments are tilted in favour of a section of the country is simply untrue and certainly uncharitable.” Adesina said, “From all records, majority of the President’s appointees across different portfolios are not from the North, as the publication erroneously alleged. “If the publication did not have ulterior motives, a simple enquiry from official sources in the Presidency would have prevented this unwarranted public disinformation. “It must be stated clearly that, despite the distractions and biased reportage of this article, President Muhammadu Buhari remains committed to serving all Nigerians, no matter the tribe, ethnicity or region, and he is also determined to ensure that Nigeria remains strong and united. “He has, and will continue to keep faith with one Nigeria and has shown this with the administration’s diverse projects in different parts of the country’s geopolitical zones.” The presidential spokesman also took time to list out the names of the agencies and the current occupiers as against the wrong names published in the report. “First of all, the publication could not even cross the t’s and dot the i’s properly. For instance, the author wrongly named the Director-General, NISER, as Haruna Yerima, whereas the DG, NISER is actually Folarin Gbadebo-Smith. Again, the author wrongly identified the CEO, NDLEA as Muhammad Abdallah. However, Mrs. Roli Bode-George is the CEO, NDLEA.
“…The article also wrongly named Tunde Irukera as Executive Secretary of CPP,-whatever that is- instead of Consumer Protection Council (CPC). Rather conveniently, the publication ignored mentioning that Mr Emeka Nwankpa is chairman of CPC. Not only that, the writer claimed that the Director-General of the Budget Office is Aliyu Gusau, whereas Mr. Ben Akabueze is the actual DG, Budget Office. “Besides, the publication made not just one, but several errors on names and positions, in what could be seen as a deliberate attempt to mislead the reading public, along the lines of some intended distortions of the truth. “For example, there are several other appointments the publication failed to mention, which clearly shows the fair geopolitical spread of President Buhari’s appointees. For instance, the publication didn’t mention Sharon Ikeazor, Director-General, PTAD, who is from Anambra, South East; Folorunsho Coker, DG, NTDC; who is from Lagos, South West; Ituah Ighodalo, of the National Council of Privatisation, who is from the South South; Eze Duru Ihioma, Chairman, NPC, who is from Imo, South East, among many others. “There are at least 50 names of the President’s appointees that the article didn’t mention that are not from the North, while there are some others that were already in place before the administration came in but reconfirmed by the Buhari administration.
“Aside from that, several names of board members/appointees from other parts of the country were deliberately left out. These include Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye, NCC Chairman, Sunday Dare, NCC Executive Commissioner, Jide Zeitlin, NSIA Chairman, Anthony Ayine, Auditor General of the Federation, Anibor Kragha, COO NNPC, Chiedu Ugbo, MD NDPHC, Uche Orji, CEO NSIA, Osita Okechukwu, DG VON, Yemi Kale, DG NBS and Waziri Adio, Executive Secretary NEITI, among several others.”