By Yusuf Alli:

• Jonathan sends 25 names to Senate
• Seven ex-miniters make list
• Governors at

ACTING President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday took a major step in the constitution of his cabinet. He sent a list of would-be ministers to the Senate.

But there were conflicting reports on the actual number of those on the list.

A source said a complete list of 42 ministers was sent by the Acting President. Another said it was only the first batch of 25.

Mrs Anenih

Mrs Anenih

A top security official said: “We have sent the first list to the Senate for screening. It is a list of 25 ministerial nominees.”

Some of those said to be on the list are a former Minister of National Planning, Sanusi Daggash (Borno); Ndanusa Alao (Kogi); a finance expert at Goldman Sachs, Olusegun Olutoyin Aganga (Lagos); Alhaji Abubakar Sadiq Mohammed (Gombe); Hon Ndueze Essien (Akwa Ibom) and a former National Woman leader of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mrs. Josephine Anenih (Anambra), who is also the wife of the party’s former Board of Trustees (BOT) chair.

Others are a former top shot of the NNPC, Chris Ogienmweyi; Alhaji Umaru Aliyu (Taraba); Murtala Yar’Adua, son of the late Shehu Musa Yar’Adua; a former Vice Chancellor of Kebbi State University, Prof. M. K. Abubakar; former Military Administrator of Bayelsa State Navy Captain M. S. Olubolade (Ekiti) and former Nasarawa State Deputy Governor Labaran Maku.

Others are Emeka Wogu (Abia), Bello Adokiye, Mrs Josephine Tapgun (Plateau), Captain Ernest Odebola, Suleiman Bello and Adamu Maina Waziri (Yobe).

The seven returning ministers are former Minister of State for Agriculture Fidelia Njeze (Enugu); former Minister of Youths Senator Olasunkanmi Akinlabi; former Minister of State for Petroleum Resources Odein Ajumogobia; former Attorney-General of the Federation and Justice Minister Adetokunbo Kayode (SAN); former Minister of State for Niger Delta Affairs Godsday Orubebe; former Minister Nuhu Somo Wya and former Minister of Mines and Steel Mrs Diezani Allison-Madueke.

Security agencies disqualified four influential former ministers.

The Acting President has been advised to replace them.

A highly-placed source in one of the screening agencies, who spoke in confidence, said the disqualification of the former ministers followed reports of poor performance.

The source said: “The Acting President has been advised to replace them and the affected states have come up with new nominees.

“All I can tell you is that the records of performance of these ex-ministers were unsatisfactory. They may not be able to cope with the pace of the Acting President.”

A former Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Tony Anenih, was said to be battling last night to ensure the retention of his godson, Gen. Godwin Abbe (former Minister of Defence) in the cabinet.

A source said: “Anenih believes that Abbe has contributed positively to the Amnesty Programme of the Federal Government and should be retained.

“But some political forces in Edo State do not want Abbe back.

“I think he may also be in the bad book of some people over the roles he played during one of the stormy sessions of the dissolved Federal Executive Council on the health of the President.”

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo is said to be playing a key role in the assignment of portfolios to likely ministers.

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