Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has blamed former President Goodluck Jonathan’s outgoing government for delaying his ministerial appointments. Buhari said Monday the previous administration had stalled a committee report that was meant to assist him in the transfer of power, according to wire service News Agency of Nigeria.
Last month, Buhari slammed Jonathan’s government for hindering a smooth transition one week before his May 29 presidential inauguration. An interim committee was set up to write a report on the issues of good governance within the various arms of the administration, as well as with infrastructure, power, national security, education, health and social welfare. But ministers and government leaders under Jonathan’s outgoing administration failed to provide any input, which delayed the report, Leadershipnewspaper reported.
“I don’t know why people are so anxious about ministers. But eventually we will have [them],” Buhari told reporters Monday at the 25th African Union summit in Johannesburg. “But the main reason is that I have an interim committee…I agreed with former President Jonathan that the minister of the outgoing government should hand over their notes or their documents to this interim committee so that a position can be prepared for the new government to start from with clear records from ministers…but unfortunately, the outgoing government did not cooperate.”
Buhari said he was also taking his time appointing individuals to key positions such as the finance and petroleum ministries. “I want to get ministers after…I have seen the report because I don’t [want] to appoint a minister today and slack him the next week because this report would give me what actually happened in terms of security [and the] economy of the country,” he added.
Jonathan and Nigeria’s former head of state, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar, initially allowed the former ministers to submit notes to the interim committee. But the committee was forced to suspend review of those notes when the outgoing People’s Democratic Party (PDP) accused Buhari’s incoming All Progressives Congress (APC) of forming a parallel government. Buhari said Monday he had received the committee’s report three days ago.
Buhari, a former military dictator, beat the incumbent Jonathan in the March 28 presidential election with more than two million votes, marking the first time an incumbent president was defeated in the West African nation. Jonathan’s PDP also lost majority legislative power for the first time in 16 years.