Audu Ogbeh Over History By Jaafar Jaafar

imageCaveat: I’m not for inclusion of gerontocrats into Buhari administration. I prefer new breed to old breed. Although a mixture of the two may make a hybrid, I would go for a cabinet replete with young men.
As I once noted, that we overlooked Buhari’s age and shortcomings occasioned by age, does not mean we will overlook and support crowding of the government with old men. Thankfully, President Buhari didn’t do that.
Audu Ogbeh alone should not be a basis for picking holes in the Buhari ministerial list because of being minister decades ago. This is the reason I didn’t talk about the issue in my previous piece.
But the Benue born politician is unnecessarily facing cyber persecution in order to stress a point. His crime? He struck a “coincidence”.
The wider narrative is that late Abubakar Sola Saraki as the Second Republic Senate Leader “screened” Audu Ogbeh. Untrue.
On the warped presentation of logic over Audu Ogbeh’s screening by the late Saraki, it is unfair to distort historical records to make a point trend. How does a Senate Leader screen ministerial nominee? The role of a Senate Leader is leading debates on government bills and measures. If really you insist on giving credit to a single person (as against giving collective credit), then it should go to the then Senate president, Joseph Wayas, who hit the gavel that paved way for Ogbeh’s appointment as Minister of Communication in 1982.
Note that the late Abubakar Sola Saraki was a Senate Leader not a Senate President as his son is today. If you still insist it was the late Saraki who screened Audu Ogbe, then you mean the credit for screening Buhari’s ministerial nominees should go to the current Senate Leader, Ali Ndume not Bukola Saraki.
Even America, whose democracy Nigeria giraffed, mixes a cabinet with a tincture of old hands. It is not something to haggle about. Donald Rumsfeld was first appointed Secretary (Minister) of State in 1975 by President Gerald Ford. And in 2001, President George Bush appointed the same Rumsfeld for the same position. Not a big deal. I would have joined them in wailing if Buhari didn’t stop at Ogbeh.

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