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Presidential Spokesperson, Mr Femi Adesina, has explained that there are other factors to consider other than federal character when the President makes his appointments.
Mr Adesina was on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics to provide the Presidency’s perspective to the debates over the concept of federal character which many Nigerians believe has not been fairly followed by President Buhari’s appointments.
Statistics shows that the South-East region has had 12 appointments while the South-South has 17, with the South West producing 16 appointees.
Up north, however, the North-West has produced the largest number of appointees with 34, the North-East has 25, while the North Central has 16 appointments.
Many Nigerians believe that the appointments are lopsided in favour of the North and Sunday Politics sought to know if these is mere coincidence.
Mr Adesina, while admitting that the appointments are indeed more in some regions, explained that appointment is an ongoing process in governance and more appointments would still be made.
The appointment of security chiefs seems to have generated even more controversy. So also is the makeup of the President’s key staff.
Mr Adesina explained that the case of security chiefs is a peculiar one because hierarchy has to be followed in such appointments.
“When it is the turn of a person to hold a certain office and you say because he is from a certain region you then bypass him for another person, you have been unfair to that person and also to the system.
“The security system often times operate on hierarchy and efficiency. So if you have a senior person who is also efficient and because he comes from a certain region, you bypass him, I think you are being unjust and unfair to somebody,” he said.
He stated further, “There are some (appointments) that are not necessarily subject to federal character.”
He commended the collation of the figures, noting that this was a feedback that was not new to the Presidency. He appealed for patience from Nigerians with the promise that appointments made by President Buhari would soon cover all regions of the country.
“One thing you can say about the government is that it listens to feedback,” he said, promising that it will be processed “and it will inform things that will happen, going forward”.
“At the end of the day, every part of the country is going to be taken care of,” he added.
Asked when the President would be making the so-called upcoming appointments, especially since the boards of some government agencies have been dissolved.
Mr Adesina said that the process had been concluded and was “somewhat” just waiting to be unveiled.
“What I will like to add to that is what is called presidential prerogative.
“It is the prerogative of the President to make some appointments when he deems fit to make such appointments and you can be sure that the appointments will come.”
Mr Adesina also defended the President on criticms regarding his reactions to international tragedies and those happening within the country.
Some Nigerians are concerned with the manner in which the President felicitates or condoles with nations over tragedies in their domain while less is heard from him when things happen in Nigeria.
“It amazes me when people say they have not heard on this and that. What they expect is that the President will come out personally to talk on those things, which I don’t think is the thing to do.
“Why does the President have aides? Why does he have ministers? Why do we have officials in government? When they have spoken on those issues, I think we should consider that government has spoken on them,” he said.
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