According to the main opposition party, since ailing President Muhammadu Buhari ceded power to Osinbajo before leaving Nigeria for London on an indefinite medical trip, the Acting President’s actions have shown that power was not handed over to him as claimed.
The party queried why the Acting President had refused to assign portfolios to the two ministers that were sworn in more than two weeks ago.
While maintaining that the actions of the Acting President indicated that he was just a figurehead, PDP’s spokesperson, Dayo Adeyeye who was a former minister of state for works explained:
“The Acting President is not in charge of the country. He is not in charge of anything. This is why nothing is moving forward.
“How do you explain a situation where two of the ministers who were sworn in after much pressure from the people and the National Assembly have not been assigned portfolios?
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“He is not in charge. He is a mere figurehead and cannot do anything. The cabals are still in charge. That is why nothing is moving forward in this country.
“The two ministers are just idle. They have no offices, nowhere to resume to and nothing to do. What is the essence of their being sworn in then? They are ministers without portfolios.
Adeyeye argued that this is a constitutional breach on the side of the government because each state ought to have a minister. “Now, these two states had been without ministers for long and after you reluctantly appointed them, you refused to give them offices,” he said.
The PDP spokesperson said it was apparent that the All Progressives Congress was not ready to rule, adding that it won the 2015 presidential election in error. He further called on Nigerians to be patient, and wait for the 2019 elections.
BuzzNigeria recalls that on July 26, 2017, Acting President Yemi Osinbajo inaugurated two new ministers which include; Prof. Stephen Ocheni from Kogi State and Mr. Suleiman Hassan from Gombe State.
Ocheni was nominated as a replacement for the late James Ocholi, who died in a car crash. Ocholi was the Minister of State for Labour and Employment before he passed on in 2016.
Hassan, on the other hand, is a replacement for Mrs. Amina Mohammed, the Minister of Environment before she was appointed as the Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations.
Their inauguration came after another long delay since May when they were screened and cleared by the Senate. It also took a resolution and an ultimatum issued by the House of Representatives for the ministers to be inaugurated.
But over two weeks after Osinbajo administered the oath of office on the ministers, they are yet to be assigned portfolios.
However, the Presidency has assured that portfolios would soon be assigned to the two new ministers. The PUNCH reports that Senior Special Assistant to the Acting President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Laolu Akande, confirmed this though he did not give a specific time.
Akande also did not give any reason why the exercise is being delayed but simply said “very soon, portfolios will be assigned to the new ministers.