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It seems we are indeed in an era of change as a lot of things have changed from what they used to be. Gone are the days when people used to lobby for federal appointments. These days, people hear they have been nominated for a federal appointment without having to call in favours from a political godfather.
Recently, we have seen some people nominated by President Muhammadu Buhari for a post reject the nomination.
A week ago, Buhari sent the names of 46 persons to the Senate for confirmation as ambassadors. Out of the 46 nominees, three people have turned down the appointment. They are Dr Usman Bugaje, Professor Akintunde Akinwande and former deputy governor of Plateau state Pauline Tallen.
What could the reason for nominees rejecting Buhari’s appointment?
1. It does not pay well anymore
Federal appointment is not as lucrative and attractive as it used to be. Now, you are expected to work and not amass stupendous wealth for your generation yet unborn which has been the case for years. Nigeria would not be where it is today if public office holders did what they were put in position to do which is to serve the people and not steal from the nation.
A month ago, the special adviser to the president on political matters, Senator Babafemi Ojudu, said this was not the best time to serve in government as officials of the present administration were suffering in their exalted offices.
2. No consultation
The nominees are not consulted before their appointments and not everyone is comfortable with that. One of the ambassadorial nominees, Akinwande turned down the offer based on the alleged fact that he was not consulted before the nomination was made. May be if the presidency had reached out to the nominees before submitting their names, we won’t be having reports of people rejecting their appointments.
3. No more money to steal
People would do anything to get a federal appointment because of how rich they would be by the time they are done pocketing government money. They make sure they gather so much money that they can’t even finish in 100 years’ time. Almost every Nigerian wants to get into power to share the national cake.
It appears there is no more national cake to share. Could this be the reason people are turning down their appointment?
4. They are not comfortable with lopsided appointments
Since President Buhari took over, some Nigerians have been lamenting that his appointments are lopsided and in favour of some regions. This was one of the reasons Tallen gave for rejecting her ambassadorial appointment. She said: “I turned down the nomination because of balancing of appointments; I don’t think it is right for me to accept the appointment.” May be if the appointments were balanced, nominees won’t be rejecting it.
5. A new guideline that ensures accountability has been put in place
Buhari is committed to restoring Nigeria to “the good old days of accountability”. Several mechanisms have been put in place to ensure public office holders are transparent and accountable. There is the Treasury Single Account (TSA) which will ensure adequate monitoring of government revenue receipts and expenditures and block leakages, as no MDA is allowed to keep any operational bank account.
6. The fight against corruption is for real
The fear of the anti-corruption posture of Buhari’s administration is the beginning of wisdom. Remember Buhari promised that no one will steal under his watch. So, those who know themselves have advised themselves accordingly.
Shouldn’t the government check with these people first before appointing them?