Tobi Soniyi in Abuja
. Says prosecution of oil thieves would start soon
President Muhammadu Buhari monday in Aburi, Ghana reassured Nigerians and the international community that he would name his cabinet before the end of the month.
A statement by the Special Adviser to the President, Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, said Buhari gave the assurance to his audience at a joint press conference with President John Dramani Mahama of Ghana.
“After I was sworn in, I said I would have my cabinet in September. I expect that Nigerians should ask me questions after the 30th of September if I do not do so,” Buhari said while responding to a question on the appointment of ministers.
Buhari also told reporters that the Nigerian military, in collaboration with the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF), had recorded remarkable progress in the fight against Boko Haram since he assumed office as president.
“The first thing I did after I came into office was to reorganise the military and clear orders were given to them in terms of retraining, re-equipping and redeployment of troops.
“In the North-east, the military is gaining ground and Boko Haram has been limited to Sambisa Forest.
“Internally displaced persons are gradually moving back home and they are being reintegrated into their respective communities,” Buhari said.
On the declaration of assets, the president affirmed that it was a constitutional requirement that all public office holders in Nigeria should declare their assets before and after their term in office.
“I recall that in 1975 when late Murtala Mohammed became the head of state, we were lined up – governors, ministers, members of the Supreme Military Council. Officials of the Ministry of Justice were brought and every individual was made to declare his assets.
“All heads of states and government, governors, ministers, permanent secretaries have to declare their assets because it is a constitutional requirement.
“I have declared my assets four times. When I was governor in 1975, I declared. After being made Minister of Petroleum and as a member of Supreme Military Council, I declared. When I was head of state and now as a president, I have also declared,” he said.
President Mahama said both leaders had fruitful discussions on how to enhance bilateral relations and improve regional security.
Mahama said Nigeria and Ghana would soon begin the process of reviving their joint commission for cooperation.
The Ghanaian president added that both leaders also agreed to encourage closer cooperation between intelligence and anti-graft agencies of both countries.
He thanked Buhari for his visit and assured him of Ghana’s support and cooperation with Nigeria in the fight against terrorism.
Also, Buhari revealed monday that the exposure and prosecution of crude oil thieves would start in a few months’ time.
Buhari made the latest revelation in an interview with the BBC Hausa Service.
He said: “We are getting a lot of results. We hope in a couple of months’ time we can make clear disclosures and start the prosecution of those that had been stealing the crude. Those who have been in charge of NNPC at top level, they can’t claim ignorance of what has been happening for the last 10 years.”
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