Afenifere kicks as Buhari appoints SGF, CoS, Customs, Immigration heads

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The pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, has kicked against the appointments announced on Thursday by President Muhammadu Buhari’s Special Adviser, Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina.
To Afenifere, “it is a worrisome development that the President does not consider the interest of a plural society like Nigeria in appointing people into sensitive positions”.
In a statement by Adesina, Buhari approved the appointment of Mr Babachir Lawal as the new Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF).
The statement said the president also appointed Alhaji Abba Kyari as his Chief of Staff; retired Col. Hameed Ali as Comptroller-General, Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), while Mr Kure Abeshi is the new Comptroller-General, Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS).
It stated that the president also appointed Senator Ita S. Enang as Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate) while Hon. Suleiman A. Kawu is the new SSA to the President on National Assembly Matters (House of Representatives).
According to the statement, the appointments are with effect from August 27.
The new Secretary to the Government of the Federation hails from Hong Local Government Area of Adamawa State.
He graduated from the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria in 1979, with a Bachelor of Engineering Degree.
He worked with the Delta Steel Company, Aladja, Nigerian External Telecommunications Limited and Data Sciences Limited, before establishing his own ICT and Telecommunications consulting firm in 1990.
He is also a member of the Nigeria Computer Society, the Nigeria Society of Engineers and the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria.
Alhaji Abba Kyari, the new Chief of Staff to the President holds Bachelors and Masters Degrees from the University of Cambridge and the University of Warwick in Law and Sociology.
He had worked with the New Nigeria Development Company, New Africa Holdings, African International Bank, United Bank for Africa, Unilever, and Mobil, in various capacities.
The new Comptroller-General of Customs, Ali, holds Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Criminology.
He was military administrator of Kaduna State from 1996 to 1998.
The new Comptroller- General of Immigration, Mr. Abeshi hails from Nasarawa State.
He joined the Nigerian Immigration Service in 1989 as an Assistant Comptroller.
His educational qualifications include a Masters Degree in Public Administration.
But Afenifere, which spoke through the Publicity Secretary, Yinka Odumakin, described the appointments as worrisome.
Chief Reuben Fasoranti is the leader of the group which has been in existence since 1951.
Odumakin said: “What we know is that the latest appointments reflect the thinking in the presidency that 95 per cent voted for President Buhari in the North and only five per cent voted for him from the South. This is worrisome indeed.
“In a plural society like Nigeria, there is no zone you cannot find competent people. That is why people are already getting worried over all these lopsided appointments. Even some people in the North are being embarrassed with all these appointments.
“There is no way you can have balance and an inclusive society when key appointments are coming from a section of the country. These lopsided appointments can never support the unity of the country”.

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