PAN-cultural groups Afenifere and Ohaneze Ndigbo have both criticised President Muhammadu Buhari over his recent cabinet saying that it was lopsided as it contained nine senior ministers from the northwest.
Yesterday, President Buhari swore-in 43 ministers, including members of the cabinet and ministers of state. However, the appointments have been criticised by Pan-Yoruba group Afenifere and Ohaneze Ndigbo as all nine ministers from the northwest geo-political zone received senior positions.
Of the six geopolitical zones in the country, the northwest, which consists of Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Sokoto and Zamfara, had the highest number of ministers, all of who received senior portfolios. Among the nine cabinet members from the northwest include Suleiman Adamu of Jigawa State, who was appointed minister of water resources; Zainab Ahmed of Kaduna State, the finance minister, Muhammad Mahmood from Kaduna State named environment minister and Sabo Nanono from Kano State, who was appointed agriculture minister.
Others are defence minister Major General Bashir Magashi from Kano State, aviation minister Hadi Sirika from Katsina State, attorney-general Abubakar Malami from Kebbi State, police affairs minister Maigarai Dingyadi from Sokoto State and Sadiya Faruk from Zamfara State who was named minister of humanitarian affairs, disaster management and social development. Afenifere publicity secretary Yinka Odumakin said the appointment of the ministers was a reflection of alleged sectionalism on the part of the president.
Mr Odumakin said: “That is next level of sectionalism, in your face and incorrigibility. There have been complaints about all these things since the first term but now, it has been done in super way. Welcome to the next level.”
Uche Achi-Okpoga, the Ohaneze Ndigbo publicity secretary, added: “We are already used to the antics of the presidency, so we were not expecting anything less. We have a president that does not mince words.
“He stated it in his first tenure that he would not sacrifice those who gave him 97% votes to those who gave him maybe 5%. So, why should we be surprised that he gave juicy and senior positions to his kinsmen?”