• Friday, June 14, 2024
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Tinubu’s northern appointees must defend him against ethnic interest – Defence minister, Matawalle

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Bello Matawalle, the minister of state for defence, said President Bola Tinubu’s appointees from the northern part of the country must promote, protect and defend the current administration against those hiding behind ethnic interest to heat up the polity.

Matawalle said this in a statement released on Monday, April 15, 2024, stating that it is not the “time to keep quiet in the face of intimidation and misrepresentation of the efforts and achievements Tinubu.”

The defence minister had earlier blasted the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) over harsh criticism of the current administration. The NEF said it regretted backing Tinubu to become the president of Nigeria.

Matawalle in his new statement dragged Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, who once served as the spokesperson of the group and currently a special adviser on political matters in the presidency, for suggesting that he could have done better in his response to the northern elders.

“According to Dr. Baba-Ahmed, my stand against the unjust and spurious attack against the new administration of President Tinubu that is working very hard to reposition our country and economy for better as ‘ill-advised’. He suggested I could have done a better job in my defence of the administration where I have the rare honour to serve as a Minister,” the statement reads.

The former Zamfara governor said Baba-Ahmed’s relationship with the NEF is well-known, but now that he now work in the presidency, he must promote and protect the government.

“Dr. Baba-Ahmed’s relationship and affinity with Northern Elders’ Forum(NEF)is well-known. The fact now is that he is an appointee of the administration as Special Adviser and it is incumbent on him to work for the success of the government he is part of, protect and defend the government against unjust and vicious attacks from those who hide under ethnic and other primordial interests to heat up the polity for myopic reasons,” he said.

Matawalle stated that all appointees, particularly those from the north, owe the government a copious duty to promote, elucidate and advance the good works and commendable efforts of the government across all sectors.

“It is pertinent to state that every appointee of President Tinubu including Dr. Baba-Ahmed owe the government a copious duty to promote, elucidate and advance the good works and commendable efforts of the government across all sectors.

“As appointees of the government from the North, we must all take a stand, be unequivocal and be counted in the roll of honours for our support and work for the success of the administration we are serving. This is not the time to keep quiet in the face of intimidation and misrepresentation of the efforts and achievements of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR . We must stand up to be counted for being on the part of the government or take our exit,” the minister said.