Following a directive from President Muhammadu Bukhara to his ministers with political ambitions, the “Great Resignation” began on Wednesday when Chukwuemek Nwajiuba, the state minister of education, left the cabinet.
Other ministers who are expected to resign are Rotimi Amaechi (transport), Godsville Akpabia (Niger Delta), Chris Ngige (labor and employment), as Ogbonna Onu (science, technology and innovation), as they joined. before the presidential race on the ruling party platform, the All Progressives Congress.
Others include Abubakar Malami, the attorney general and justice minister, who is seeking to challenge the governor of Kebi; Uche Ogar, the state minister of mines and steel, who is running for governor in Abia, and Pauline Talen, the minister for women’s affairs, have stated their ambitions to fight for a seat in a senator in the state of Plateau.
BusinessDay reported on Wednesday that the Nigerian economy, which is still feeling the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and the war between Russia and Ukraine, has suffered another setback as politics has already taken center stage, pushing governance to the background.
The results showed that the election campaign of some cabinet members delayed the implementation of policies, project oversight and other key activities of many state ministries, departments and agencies.
On Wednesday, Bukhara instructed the Secretary of the Federation Government, Boss Mustafa, to issue a circular indicating those affected by the president’s resignation.
Garba Shehu, the president’s senior special aide for media and advertising, made the announcement at the presidential villa in Abuja on Wednesday.
He said Bukhara had given a directive to ministers who had acquired forms of nominating candidates to run for the presidency and other elected positions to resign immediately.
He said: “He told them to follow the example of the Minister of State of Education Nwajabu, who took the form and resigned.
“The president said that anyone who bought forms to challenge for any elected office, with the exception of the vice president, should immediately resign and face their ambitions. That’s what directive he gave. I advise you to wait for the circular issued by the Secretary of Government. “
He added: “I want people to understand that whether there is a law or not a law, the president appoints and he has the right to dismiss any appointee. He asked them to resign immediately, so we expect them to do so. “
The head of the Federation service, Folashad Yemi-Essan, had previously warned civil servants to refrain from participating in guerrilla politics, as stated in the Civil Service Rules.
This was contained in a circular signed by the head of the service, dated 5 May 2022, marked HCSF / 479 / II / 19, entitled: “Explanation of the provisions of the Civil Service Rules in relation to the decision of the Supreme Court as it applies to civil servants in guerrilla policy.”
The circular said: “There is a need to draw the attention of all civil servants to the legal opinion of the esteemed. The Attorney General of the Federation and the Minister of Justice (HAGF & MJ) on the matter.
“In his letter ref. In issue SGF / PS / HCSF / 210 / II of 26 November 2018, HAGF & MJ stated, inter alia, that “neither the 1999 Constitution nor the Supreme Court allowed civil servants to engage in party politics”.
She drew the attention of civil servants to Rule 030423 of the Civil Service Rules, which states that “resignation is required before holding an elected public office. However, any officer wishing to engage in political activity or hold an elected public office must resign immediately. ”
Chekvas Akari, a founding member of the All Progressive Grand Alliance, embraced the president’s decision, saying it was right not to affect governance.
He said: “Probably, the president was advised on this issue by his advisers. President Muhammadu Bukhara fired no one; whether there is an Election Law or not, it is morally wrong to campaign and remain in office.
“Anyone who would pay such money to get a presidential form would do anything to get a ticket, and in the process would suffer a duty in the ministry. Speaking in the office would be difficult. The president should not allow a vacuum, let him appoint new people to office soon. “
Ida Amalegan, an analyst and public lawyer, said it would be unfair and an obstacle for the Bukhara administration to allow ministers to remain in office during the campaign.
“What he has done is a common global practice, it is thought that these people will have an undue advantage over their opponents because you will use your position to influence things to your advantage,” he said.