ADDRESS BY HIS EXCELLENCY, MUHAMMADU BUHARI PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA TO CABINET MEMBERS AT THE VALEDICTORY SESSION FOR APPOINTEES LEAVING THE CABINET TO PURSUE POLITICAL AMBITIONS
FRIDAY 13TH MAY, 2022
Today marks yet another landmark event designed to establish a culture of managing the departure of public officers who have served the nation sacrificially, with dignity and honour.
2.In 2015, citizens of this country overwhelmingly voted for me to become the President of this nation on the platform of the APC. Selecting members of the Cabinet went through a careful process so that the best and most competent could emerge. The performance of that class of 2015 proved me right.
3.In 2019, Nigerians similarly re-elected me as President. Again the selection went through another meticulous process. That re-election was significant because it served as a referendum on our performance during the first term and it inspired me to bring back some of the members of the first cabinet either to their old Ministries or re-assigned to other sectors.
4.New Members were also brought on board to inject fresh energies, skills and ideas to enhance the execution of government’s programs and policies.
5.Looking back as the President and head of the team over the years, I hold fond memories of incisive and robust discussions during cabinet meetings, rendering of performance reports during special sessions and presidential retreats.
6.With these and much more, I am happy to note that a significant number of cabinet members have become sufficiently equipped to aspire to higher elective offices, including the Office of the President. This shows the impact of the experience gathered while serving as members of the Federal Executive Council.
7. I have no doubt that if the next President emerges from among former members of this cabinet, like any other aspirant, ample competence and outstanding service delivery would be on display. This will be part of our legacies to Nigerians.
8. Let me acknowledge that prior to some of you joining the cabinet, you had made your marks in other areas as Governors, Legislators, entrepreneurs and core professionals in different fields, etc.
9.The experience and expertise you brought on board have significantly resulted in enormous development in various sectors and the accomplishments of our programmes. These include infrastructure, agriculture, health systems, financial management, administration of justice, building social safety net systems, etc.
10.You will recall that at the last Federal Executive Council meeting held Wednesday 10th May, 2022, I directed that all Ministers and other political appointees who aspire to contest for elective offices in the 2023 General Elections should resign their current appointments. I note that some have complied while others are in the process of doing so.
11.I would like to use this opportunity to commend your decision and courage to contest for elective offices and your compliance with my directive. I also wish to thank you for your invaluable services to this nation through your contributions as Cabinet members.
12.I wish you success in the upcoming elections and in your future endeavors.
13.The departure of some cabinet members has undoubtedly created a vacuum that should be filled. That would be carried without delay so that the business of governance will not suffer.
14.For members of the Cabinet that are remaining on board, I wish to remind you that the journey to the finish line is still very far and this calls for more diligence, resilience and commitment to serve Nigerians better.
15.Like always, there will be challenges to address, programmes to deliver and policies to implement. You must therefore brace up for more work and target increased accomplishments. The determination to leave important legacies for Nigerians should never be compromised.
I thank you once again and God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.