Saturday, 2 July 2016

President Buhari appointment of northerners worrisome – Southern groups

Southern groups in Nigeria has berated President Muhammadu Buhari over the appointment of mainly northerners to man the security apparatus of the nation.
President Buhari has been accused of being a section president severally
President Buhari has been accused of being a section president severally
According to the groups, the appointments by the president does not reflect federal character and the diversified nature of Nigeria.
While speaking to The Punch on the issue, the spokesman for the Ijaw National Congress, Mr Victor Borubo, said the appointments suggested the President was “tribalistic” and not“interested” in the country’s diversity.
His words: “Personally, it is an issue that has troubled me greatly and the president has not shown any sensitivity to it — the issue of the Constitution that people from all the states of the federation should be appointed in such positions.
“But the president is not showing interest in diversity and this has led to the loss of confidence in his administration. I think this is why different agitation groups are springing up across the country.”
On his part, the secretary general of the Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Dr Joe Nwosu, said the appointments so far had not reflected the federal character that is sacrosanct in the Nigerian constitution.
His words: “We have been crying out loud since the first appointments — of the ministers were made — when out of the 36 ministers, 24 were chosen from the North. Now that other Nigerians are complaining, it means we are not alone. As a tribe, we have had a long history of marginalisation from governance in Nigeria.
“The President said the appointments were made on merit, so are we now saying that only the Northerners have merit? Where is the federal character which we talk about in Nigeria?”
Also speaking on the issue, the national publicity secretary of the pan-Yoruba socio-cultural organisation, Afenifere, Mr Yinka Odumakin, said the mostly Northern composition of the leadership of the country’s security agencies was very dangerous and could lead to the heating up of the polity.
Odumakin who is a former spokesperson of the president, said:“The pattern of the appointments today has not shown enough sensitivity to the diversity of Nigeria.
“When you have the IG of the Police, the Chief of Army Staff, the Chief of Naval Staff and Minister of Defence, the Minister of Interior and the NSA appointed from a section of the country, what that means is that when the apparatchiks are meeting, it is a section of the country that is being represented; it means that the views of other sections are not accommodated, that is very dangerous.
“That kind of arrangement is a situation from which genocide germinates because there is no balance in the security architecture of the country. This is not healthy for the polity. When you look at the table today, especially at the composition of the heads of the security agencies, I don’t think everybody is comfortable.”
In the same vein, the spokesman for the Ijaw Youth Congress, Mr Eric Omare, said the situation was worrisome and unhealthy for the country.
Omare said, “The style of the resident’s recruitment is worrisome. When you appoint people from only one part of the country, it gives room for concern. For instance, we have a security challenge in the Niger Delta and we expected he would appoint someone from here who knows how to deal with it. However, he didn’t do so.
“We are not surprised because looking at the background of the president, he does not really know the country he is governing. Look at the people around him; there is no diversity. It is worrisome and we call on him to make changes with immediate effect.”
Similarly, the spokesman for the Afenifere Renewal Group, Mr Kunle Famoriyo, said the president’s action suggested that he was promoting a Northern agenda.
His words: “It is very clear to everybody that the appointments of the heads of the security agencies tend towards the North. It is clear to everybody the appointments are Northern agenda than being pan-Nigeria agenda. This is clear for everybody to see.
“Does that mean there is no person from the South-West, South-East and the South-South that is qualified and educated to hold any of those key positions? One is not happy that what is supposed to have national character is not having it. That is the issue that must be looked into.”
The worries of the groups may not be put of place as a cursory look at the security hierarchy in the country shows an imbalance.
NAIJ.com checks reveals that 14 of the nation’s 17 security agencies are currently being headed by northerners.
See the proof below:
1. Minister of Interior – Lt.-Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau rtd ( Kaduna state)
2. Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) chairman – Ibrahim Magu (Borno state)
3. Chief of Army Staff – Lt.-Gen. Tukur Yusuf Buratai (Borno state)
4. Acting Inspector-General of Police – Ibrahim Idris (Niger state)
5. Minister of Defence – Brig.-Gen. Mansur Dan Ali rtd (Zamfara state)
6. Commandant-General of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) – Abdullahi Muhammadu (Katsina state)
7. Director-General of the Department of State Services (DSS) – Lawal Musa Daura (Katsina state)
8. Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) – Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali rtd (Bauchi state)
9. Controller-General of the Nigeria Prison Service (NPS) – Alhaji Ja’afaru Ahmed (Kebbi state)
10. Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) – Muhammed Babandede (Jigawa state)
11. Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) – Corps Marshal Boboye Oyeyemi (Kwara state)
12. Comptroller-General of the Federal Fire Service – Joseph Anebi (Kogi state)
13. Director-General of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) – Alhaji Sani Didi (Kaduna state)


14.   Chief of Air Staff – Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar (Bauchi state)

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