The majority of Nigeria’s current ministers have at least a university degree with some having multiple degrees while at least four have PhDs.
Law degree is their most desired honour as 14 of the nation’s current 44 ministers, whose ages have been spotlighted to be at odds with national reality, are law graduates at various levels.
This is followed by honours in engineering, public and business administration, data culled from the review of their curriculum vitae show.
Law graduates among the ministers include the state ministers for environment, Sharon Ikeazor; power, Goddy Agba; labour, Festus Keyamo; science and technology, Mohammed Abdullahi; foreign affairs, Zubair Dada; and education, Emeka Nwajiuba.
Others are ministers of Niger Delta, Godswill Akpabio; industry, trade and investment, Richard Adebayo; foreign affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama; defence, Bashir Magashi; youths and sports, Sunday Dare; information, Lai Mohammed; works and housing, Babatunde Fashola; and justice, Abubakar Malami.
Behind law, engineering, public administration and business administration are the degrees most sought after by the ministers. Five ministers have degrees in each of these courses.
Those with engineering degrees include ministers of power, Sale Mamman; state for works and housing, Abubakar Aliyu; science and technology, Ogbonnaya Onu; water resources, Suleiman Adamu; and interior, Rauf Aregbesola.
The ministers of labour, Chris Ngige; agriculture, Sabo Nanono (at master’s level); Mr Malami; and FCT (state), Ramatu Tijjani, make up the quintet with degrees in public administration.
Ministers of FCT, Muhammad Bello; Clement Agba (as master’s honour); Mr Nanono (as first degree in 1972); humanitarian affairs, Sadiya Farouq; mines and steel (state), Ikechukwu Ogah all had a stint in business administration in the course of their educational itinerary.
Accounting, medicine, international studies, economics, English and sociology are the next most studied course among the ministers with Adamu Adamu, education; Zainab Ahmed, finance; and Tayo Alasoadura, Niger Delta (state) all having degrees in accounting.
While the trio of Osagie Ehanire, health; Adeleke Mamora, health (state); and Mr Ngige (as first degree) studied medicine, the trio of Goddy Agba and Mr Dare (both at first degree levels) and Ms Farouq (at master’s level) are graduates of international studies.
Likewise, transportation minister for state, Gbemisola Saraki and Mr Agba have honours in economics.
In the same vein, Paulen Tallen, women affairs; George Akume, special duties; and Mustapha Shehuri, agriculture (state) studied sociology. This is just as Rotimi Amaechi, transportation; Maryam Katagum, industry (state); and Timipre Sylva, petroleum (state) hold degrees in English.
The duo of Maigari Dingyadi, minister of police affairs and Mr Onyeama studied political science (both at bachelor’s and master’s degrees).
Also, both Mr Adamu and Mr Dare have degrees in journalism. Lai Mohammed (as one of the two bachelor’s degrees he has) and Mr Dada are graduates of French.
All the ministers but three have at least one university degree, with Ahmadu Bello University being the institution where the most degrees were obtained, the review of their credentials show.
Petroleum minister Muhammadu Buhari graduated from Mons Officer Cadet School, Aldershot, UK, in 1963 having completed his programme at the Nigerian Military Training College (NMTC) in 1962, which was later renamed the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) in February 1964.
As a colonel, Mr Buhari later attended the U.S. Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, where he bagged a master’s degree in strategic studies in 1980.
Tayo Alasoadura, state minister for Niger Delta, has various accounting honours, including ICAN, Fellow Chartered Accountant (FCA) – which one earns after five years of practice as an accountant after qualifying for ACA; Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA); and Fellow Chartered and Certified Accountant (FCCA).
His colleague at the ministry of interior, Rauf Aregbesola, also gained a higher diploma in mechanical engineering in 1980 from The Polytechnic, Ibadan.
Aviation minister Hadi Sirika also has various aviation qualifications to his name, including those he got from the Nigeria Civil Aviation Training Centre, Zaria, Delta Aeronautics Inc, Petroleum Helicopters Training Institute, Flight Safety International and City University London where he had his masters.
Twenty four of the ministers have both bachelor’s degrees and master’s degrees.
The quartet of communication minister, Ali Pantami; science and technology minister, Ogbonnaya Onu; education minister for state, Emeka Nwajiuba; and environment minister, Muhammad Mahmood, all have PhD degrees.
FCT minister for state, Ramatu Tijjani, has a PhD degree in view from 2015.
State minister for mines and steel, Ikechukwu Ogah, has a higher diploma in accounting from the Institute of Management and Technology (IMT), Enugu. He went on to bag two bachelor’s degrees to his name, his CV shows – first in banking and finance and then in business administration.
Foreign affairs minister Geoffrey Onyeama has two bachelor’s and two master’s degrees, both in political science and law.
Like him, humanitarian affairs minister, Sadiya Farouq, has two master’s degrees. One in business administration which she got in 2011, and the other in international affairs and diplomacy.
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