The ministerial screening has come and gone and posterity will say well of the Nigerian 8th Senate of how it did its best to thoroughly screened the senatorial nominees. Posterity will say well of all the senators that participated in the screening exercise and how they meticulously grilled the ministerial nominees and after having satisfied that they were free of corruption and other malpractices and will be suitable for whatever role that would be given to them by the President, were all confirmed as the minster of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
As at today we have reputable ministers without portfolios except for the minister of Petroleum who is also the President of Nigeria. While we await the minsters to be given their portfolios, we can't but remember all the beautiful scenes and intellectual dramas that took place during the screening up till the most interesting stage, where all the PDP Senators, most of whom are known for their excellent services and accountability in their previous public services, majestically and honourably walked out of the Senate Session having thought that the former governor of Rivers State, Rotimi Amaechi was not upright a man to be conferred with such a prestigious position of the minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. I was told the PDP senators later ruminated on a statement made by Amaechi and had a rethink about the man. I was told they later apologised to Amaechi and commended the APC senators for seeing through the screening and subsequent confirmation of Amaechi as an honourable senator of Nigeria.
The statement Amaechi said that made the PDP senators to have a rethink is: 'I have never received bribe in my life'. The PDP senators were moved with this simple statement of truth and felt sobered for doubting the integrity of such a man like Amaechi who never received a bribe in his life. They later admitted that a man who never committed a common crime in every stratum of our society like bribery is actually worthy to be a minister of our republic.
Amaechi statement at the scene of the Senate is just one of the beautiful statements made by the prospective ministers that made Nigerians know that we have the right people as our ministers.
You will remember the words of the prudent spender Kayode Fayemi, former governor of Ekiti State who told the Senate that he only spent less than N1.5 million (‘..not even a bed of N1.5 million is there’) to purchase a bed dismissing the false accusation made by his detractors that he used N50 million to buy just a bed. He challenged his detractors before the distinguished senators to bring forth the receipt of the purchase. That was a great invention by Fayemi – his detractors may call it manipulation of time, I will call it encasing time. Fayemi asked his detractors to come forward but because time was doing Fayemi's bidding, before they could step out of their doors, Fayemi has been successfully screened.
You will remember the famous words of former Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola that again made him stood out as an intelligent and outstanding personality. When asked concerning his administration as Lagos State governor and about him spending 78 million naira for a website, Fashola simply informed his audience that he didn't sign cheques while in office and none of his commissioners did. His audience, amazed with such an upright man who didn't even sign a cheque accused of corruption, felt bad and quickly asserted he is more than fit to be a senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Of all the honorable men screened for the ministerial posts, Barrister Adebayo Shittu stood out. A brave man and of unequalled enterprising. His words are profound and if carefully looked into and acted on by the government, will in no way improve the economy and security of our dear Republic. Adebayo showcasing his great expertise in security, knew how to give the enemy false importance and make them look bigger that they are when he said, “I won’t comment on Boko Haram, I still have family to take care of', “So anybody that still wants to live will not condemn that faceless group publicly’. Barrister Shittu only pretended to be afraid of BokoHaram when in reality, intentionally avoided to provide the BokoHaramists that might be watching him on television information about the havoc that is coming on them and consequently stopped them to brace up themselves for what is to come. Only few people are aware of this tactics employed by Barrister Shittu
Two other significant statements made by Barrister Adebayo Shittu which many people didn’t take serious but integrally important to the development of our economy is:
1. ‘If I have my way, all Religious Leaders should be paid Officers, they should be paid by the Government’
2. ‘Religion must be made compulsory in our institutions.
I wonder why people didn’t look at it from the angle Barrister Shittu made these statements. He simply said that if he had his way, he would ensure that the government takes over all the religious institutions and by so doing, all the clerics of these religious institutions will be government employees and the government will pay them accordingly. This is a great suggestion which I will advise the government to embrace. Imagine how richer the government will be. All the jets used to spread the gospel in all the crannies and nooks of the earth, massive edifices erected to the glory of God, businesses established to cater for the masses, the billions of naira accrued over the years from generous members and wise investments and all the universities primarily established to enable the poor among the flock of God have access to cheap and quality education will all belong to the government. Imagine all the individuals paying their tithes regularly.
Tell me, how can our government ever get poor if it listens to the beautiful advices of Barrister Shittu? If all of the above are achievable and work out well, tell me, will it be a wrong idea to make religion compulsory?
This is the first time we are having the round pegs of Ministers in the round hole of our republic. And with the little insights and grand statements made at the floor of the Senate by these honourable ministers, we can be confident to expect more and better things from their fountain of knowledge.
Shina Orodele writes in from Lagos where he Lives.
Follow him on Twitter: @Sorodele
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