Last week, President Muhammadu Buhari swore in his new ministers and assigned them portfolios. Unlike in 2015 when the president maintained lean cabinets, he has expanded his cabinets to 43 with the creation of additional ministries, although some Nigerians are surprised and not comfortable with the kind of personalities that make up Buhari’s ministers. In the two days induction training organised for the new ministers, the president told the ministers that their task would be laborious this time and he drew their attention to the numerous challenges ahead.
With the inauguration of ministers, the Buhari administration should hit the ground running. In his first term, the country experienced increase in the wave of attacks by the dreaded Boko Haram insurgents, the rampaging Fulani killers, ethnic and communal strifes and high rate of kidnapping.
These problems have defied lasting solutions. I think the new minister of defence should be fully prepared to tackle these security challenges with the iron hand. The ministry of defence should involve all the security agencies to secure our country from these blood thirsty terrors.
The unnecessary intra-agency rivalry has done more harm than good and should be resolved speedily through the regular security agencies’ meeting organised and coordinated by the office of the national security adviser.
There is also the need for intensive intelligence gathering and deployment of modern security gadgets to monitor the movement of terrorists and other criminals in the length and breadth of the country.
With the swathe of internally displaced people due to numerous crises in the country, the creation of Ministry of Humanitarian Disaster Management and Social Development is apt and timely. The new ministry which is headed by the former commissioner of Nigeria Refugee Commission, Sadiya Faruk, will provide the emergency response to the natural and man-made disasters in the country.
Buhari’s second term ministers will face the unresolved national minimum wage, the education crises and many more challenges.
President Muhammadu Buhari should ensure his ministers perform to the satisfaction of Nigerians because it seems Nigerians have run out of patience and have endured enough excuses. They now desire desperately the dividends of democracy.
Ibrahim Mustapha Pambegua,
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