The Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, has told the two newly sworn in ministers on Wednesday that they will have no time to celebrate their joining the federal cabinet as they need to commence work immediately.
The two ministers, Stephen Ocheni from Kogi State and Suleiman Hassan from Gombe State, are replacing the late James Ocholi, who died in a car accident along Abuja/ Kaduna expressway and Amina Mohammed who was appointed the Deputy Secretary General of the United Nations respectively.
In a brief remark after swearing them in, Mr. Osinbajo said their portfolio will be announced shortly, adding, “from this moment they will join the federal executive council and will sit in our meeting this morning. So Prof and Alhaji you will not have time to celebrate much this morning. You will have full meeting today”.
The acting president said the Federal Executive Council is committed to the far-reaching reform programme of the Buhari administration.
“That reform programme is contained in our Economic Recovery and Growth Plan. We have focused our attention on key areas of that economic recovery plan and we believe these key areas are things that need to be done to make a difference in the Nigerian economy and in the lives of Nigerians.
“Time and time again we have continued to emphasise the need for ministers to pay particular attention to all the areas that we have highlighted in the economic plan.
“President Muhammadu Buhari decided to task ministers with specific functions and so we expect our new ministers to be part of this herculean task in turning around the Nigerian economy and making live better for the citizens,” he said.
Mr. Osinbajo also told the new ministers that apart from the economy, the administration also focuses on two key areas highlighted by the president during the course of the campaigns, which “have become center pieces of our administration Programme – security and the anti-corruption fight”.
“We expect that members of the federal executive council will focus on these key areas as well. We have of course made tremendous progress in security, we have issues and challenges here and there, but these, compared to where we are coming from, are very minor indeed and we are tackling them on a day by day basis,” he said.
On the anti-corruption fight, Mr. Osinbajo said all government appointees should by their actions support the fight.
He charged them to show exemplary conducts so that “we will show by practice not just by words that we are determined to ensure that this country is run by a good government. And where there is honesty and integrity, service will be delivered.”
“Even as I welcome you to this cabinet, I congratulate friends and family who are here and I can only say going by your antecedents as contained in your resume read out, it is evident that you are deserving of positions held in the Federal Republic of Nigeria and that you are capable of rendering all the task that will given to you.
“The only reward is more hard work and I wish you the best as ministers of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” he said.