President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has shunned various requests to cut the country’s governance cost.
The president instead over-bloated the Federal Executive Council by appointing 47 ministers to work with him in his cabinet – the highest since 1999 when Nigeria returned to democratic rule.
Olusegun Obasanjo had 12 ministers, his successor Umaru Musa Yar’adua had 27 ministers, Goodluck Jonathan appointed 33 ministers, while the immediate past president, Muhammadu Buhari, designated 44.
The move comes at a time the Tinubu-led administration has been on an incremental spree – from petrol pump prices to school fees, Custom excise duties, and taxes, among others.
Also, the number of ministers the president intends to appoint is 11 more than the Nigerian constitution requires, a move that might be challenged in court.
To make matters worse, 41 of the 47 ministers nominated are career politicians rewarded for helping Tinubu win the election.
“Nigeria will have 47 ministers, each equipped with luxurious bulletproof SUVs and questionable allowances, while the burden of sacrifices and patience falls on the poor. It’s an illogical situation,” Ibrahim Shuwa, a public affairs commentator, laments on Twitter.
Ken Eluma Asogwa, an entrepreneur, stated that the president is not being sincere with Nigerians.
“47 ministers in a season of austerity. You tell the masses to tighten their belts but tell the political class to loosen theirs.”
Kevin Omokaro, a publicist, towed the same line, saying:
“47 ministers and you want the masses to endure the hardship of subsidy removal. Please, bring back the subsidy and appoint whoever you want to appoint. Let everyone face their business.”
Isah Bawa wrote:
“You are telling Nigerians to make sacrifices that the government is broke, yet you are putting together a cabinet of 47 ministers who will all require huge government funding to run their offices.”