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Tuesday, 25 October 2016

AMBASSADORS’ LIST: BUHARI TELLS APC GOVS TO PUT COMPLAINTS IN WRITING



Governors from the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) have urged President Muhammadu Buhari to change some of the persons he had nominated as ambassadors.
 
The governors said this was necessary to ensure fairness and equal representation among the various zones in the states.
 
They presented their complaints to Buhari yesterdayduring a two-hour meeting at the Aso Rock Presidential Villa in Abuja.The president however asked them to put their complaints in writing.
The president had sent the names of 46 non-career ambassadorial nominees to the Senate last Thursday.
Plateau State Governor Simon Lalong told State House reporters after the meeting that the president had promised to look into the complaints by various states.
Commenting on Pauline Tallen who had turned down her nomination,the governor said: "Well, it's not only about her husband (being sick). I think it's the dimension of Plateau politics because I had already made complaints to Mr. President that appointments should not be concentrated in one zone. 
"So, the complaint coming from our state is not about her own personal interest, it's the fact that two ambassadorial appointments are coming from the same zone that we had complained. That's my zone. 
"We had complained that the next appointment should go to the other zone, the central and the northern zones. And so, when that appointment came, the kind of uproar that followed that appointment also necessitated an intervention.
"And I think as a matured politician, Tallen stepped down and sacrificed that for the people of Plateau. We're still working on a replacement for that. It's not a big issue, but at times, a little consultation would have solved that problem because these are issues in the interest of the state. 
"You can't have two appointments, very key appointments like that coming from a particular zone that's already overloaded with appointments. All the federal appointments are from the southern zone. 
"It would not be fair. So, we are approaching Mr. President to consider fairness and appoint people from those areas that do not have representation.
"All the states that had complaints are going to put it in writing and the president promised he is going to look into it."
Daily Trust reports that many governors and party leaders were unhappy with the list, even as some of the nominees, including Dr UsmanBugaje, declined the offers saying they were not consulted.
Speaking on the economic challenges facing the country, the chairman of the Progressive Governors' Forum, RochasOkorocha of Imo State, said the APC must take responsibility for all the current happenings in the country. 
Okorocha said they discussed a lot of issues affecting Nigeria and her development.
Fielding a question on the current hardship in the country, he noted, however, that the problem was not caused by the APC-led government but had existed long before the party came into power, adding that the APC was only trying to clear the mess of the past.
"But we must take responsibility and we must never shift the responsibility to anybody," the governor said.  
Asked whether he meant that the APC was responsible for everything happening in Nigeria, he answered in the affirmative, saying "we are responsible-- the good, the bad, the ugly; but we are promising Nigerians that we shall fix it."
Okorocha asked Nigerians to bear with the APC-led government, assuring them that things would change for better next year.
He stated: "There is no surgery that is not painful. Nigeria is going through a very serious economic surgery, and that's the pains we're experiencing. We share the pains of Nigerians; every human being must feel it. 
"We also feel what they're going through, but we're asking for a little patience. Let's do things the right way and do it once and for all. I'm sure that by next year, you'll begin to see changes, the price of rice will drop, prices of dollars will begin to stabilise and we'll see a lot of changes. 
"But at this painful moment, nobody likes it. It's like a woman in the labour room; when she is in the labour room, there is no joy, but she has to pass through that moment and that moment she doesn't wear her high heel shoes, no makeup, no champagne, no party; she's going through a process, but shortly after that process, joy cometh once she sees the child. So, Nigerians should bear with us as a government."
Okorocha said they resolved at the meeting to  ensure the APC win the forthcoming gubernatorial election in Ondo State, emphasising they had decided "to show support for that election so that APC will take over the government of Ondo State."
He said though to some extent, there was a controversy surrounding the emergency of the party's gubernatorial candidate, RotimiAkeredolu, the issue would be resolved "because Ondo is coming back to APC and we will do all we can. These were some of the things we discussed."
Okorocha said he came for the meeting particularly to encourage Buhari and congratulate him on the release of the 21 Chibok girls.
"We said whatever was the action taken to bring back these girls, let the action be repeated so that the rest of the girls can be free. This will help because this is a very big achievement in the life history of this government.
"Again, we came to report to Mr. President that his agriculture policy is producing result. This time around, we have bumper harvest in most parts of the country in rice production and other things. So, that policy should be sustained. And the funding policy by CBN, the anchor borrowers should be encouraged because it's yielding results. in the next couple of years, Nigeria will be self-sufficient in agriculture and will not need to import anymore food product into this country. That is a great achievement."
He said they also encouraged the president to continue the fight against corruption. "We know that in the pursuit of good programmes, certain lapses will be noticed, and there is nothing wrong in pursuing a good cause. We encouraged and thanked him for the efforts he is making to move this country forward."
Okorocha said the meeting did not discuss the alleged corruption in the judiciary. 
On what Buhari told them, Okorocha said: "The president was quite happy and said he appreciated our support to him and we're looking forward to how we can work together to strengthen the economy and the party."
On the call by a national leader of the APC, Ahmed Bola Tinubu, for the resignation of the party's national chairman, John Odigie-Oyegun, Okorocha said: "We're not talking about anybody resigning; we are talking about rebuilding the party to make it a stronger party right from the booth level to the national level. We come from a party that nobody expected would ever win this election. We need to give them kudos and if there are areas of amendment, we must do that." 
-Daily Trust

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