Buhari may appoint ministers this week – Senate President

Senate President Ahmed Lawan
Senate President Ahmed Lawan[PHOTO CREDIT: @DrAhmadLawal

Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, has hinted of the Senate receiving the executive’s ministerial nominees list this week.

President Muhammadu Buhari was sworn-in for a second term on May 29 after winning re-election in February. However, he is yet to constitute his cabinet about one and a half months after.

The development has increased worry among Nigerians who question the president on his delay, with many criticising him based on his six months delay to send the list during his first tenure.

Expressing similar worry on Wednesday, Albert Bassey Akpan (Akwa-Ibom-PDP) asked Mr Lawan to urged President Buhari to do his constitutional duty on time.

Mr Akpan came under Order 43 of the Senate Standing Order.

“It’s just a very simple reminder to our colleagues that based on our calendar, and we understand your passion towards supporting Mr President to achieve his aim for a new Nigeria,” he said.

“But based on our own calendar, I think we should be proceeding on our long annual vacation in the next two weeks and I also know that in line with your vision for new Nigeria, you believe that we should return the country to January to December budget fiscal period. This cannot be made possible without…

“If we are going on recess in two weeks and by now we have not received the ministerial nominees. It means we have to put ourselves under intense pressure. I’m just calling the attention of Mr President that there is a need for you to urge Mr President to send the list of ministerial nominees so that the Senate can…”

He was interrupted by rowdiness that greeted his comments.

Ruling on the point of order, Mr Lawan assured the senators that the executive is working on the list and could transmit it before the end of the week.

“I think this is to inform this Senate that the executive arm is working hard to get the list to the Senate. I can imagine that before this week runs out, we could get the list. But I want to assure you that once we get the list, every senator here has shown the desire to stay long enough to screen and confirm the nominees in the interest of this country,” he said.

On Tuesday, the Chairman Senate Committee on Media, Adedayo Adeyeye, said the Senate has no constitutional duty or power to hasten the submission of the list.

“That is the prerogative of the executive,” he replied to a question on what the Senate is doing to get the list transmitted in time.

“We are not going to help them to do their job. The Senate cannot generate the list of ministers on its own. It is the prerogative of the president to send his ministerial nominee list to the Senate and when he does that we will consider it. That is our constitutional mandate. It is not even within our powers to even advice. We will wait until the matter is transmitted to us.

“The executive is aware of the timetable of the Senate. There is a particular time the Senate will go on recess. That being in mind they should be mindful of when they will carry out this constitutional responsibility,” he said.


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