Written by Golu Timothy:
* Senate receives list today
Acting President Goodluck Jonathan has finally sent to the State Security Service (SSS) a list of fresh members of his reconstituted federal cabinet, following the dissolution of the one he inherited from ailing President Umaru Yar’Adua.
The list, which he sent to the SSS for screening yesterday, will complete the first one he sent containing the names of ministers returning from the dissolved cabinet.
LEADERSHIP learnt on good authority last night that the new list contains the names of recently retired federal permanent secretary from Kebbi State, Alhaji Bello Maitambari, as well as a former Nigerian envoy to Japan, Ambassador Adamu Aliyu, who hails from Bauchi State.
Others, according to the source, are: Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs, Hon. Umar Bature (Sokoto), former Chief Whip of the House of Representatives, Hon. Abubakar Bawa Bwari (FCT), Alhaji Lawal Buba (Borno), and a former managing director of National Electric Power Authority (NEPA), Engineer Bello Suleiman (Sokoto), who is also a former minister of power.
Jonathan is expected to present a list of the returning ministers to the Senate this morning for confirmation – in line with constitutional provisions.
Our correspondent gathered that the list of the new cabinet contains the names of those returning ministers that had been screened and cleared by the SSS yesterday.
“The Senate is said to be going on recess on Thursday and there is urgent need to keep government activities going. The returning ministers are expected to assume duty this week,” the source said.
Meanwhile, Governors Ikedi Ohakim and Timipre Sylva of Imo and Bayelsa states respectively have assured that the new cabinet to be set up by Jonathan will be a virile one and that it can take the country to the next level.
They said they are optimistic that the new leader will put square pegs in square holes so that policies put in place can be implemented with ease.
Speaking with State House correspondents after submitting their ministerial nominees to Jonathan yesterday, the duo said Jonathan’s dissolution of the cabinet last week would pave way for new blood to be injected into the system.
According to Ohakim: “I am a governor of a state and I have the right to submit my ministerial list, but that is not the reason I am here for. I have come to confer with the acting president on the issue of security in the state and luckily the acting president has made some approval. The government has agreed to tackle the issue of security, gangsterism and kidnapping. Government is disturbed but nobody can overwhelm it.
“Now that they (militants) are unable to get crude oil to finance their gangs they now decided that millionaires in Igbo Land must be taken hostage to finance their activities. We are waiting to see how illegalities will outweigh legalities.
“The acting president is pragmatic and is forward looking. He knows what to do. He knows that the country has been trekking and we need to run fast. My mind tells me that come what may he will look for key professionals; those who can run with the ball; those who can run with the ball and give them responsibilities of driving the activities of this country because we can’t wait forever. I know who he is and he has what it takes. In the next few days you will be happy with what is coming out from the exercise.”
Ohakim added that contrary to insinuations, there is no friction between the governors and the president. “The governors govern the states while the president governs the nation.”
On his part, Governor Sylva noted, “There is no big deal in the matter. As for me, I came from the same state with the acting president, so we can handle our issues well. There is no problem at all.”
Governor Aliyu Akwe Doma of Nasarawa State was also at the Presidential Villa yesterday to submit his list of ministerial nominees to Jonathan.
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