Former Labour Minister Advises Against Over Populated Cabinet

Nigeria’s former Minister of Labour and Employment, Chief Emeka Wogu, has called on the incoming administration of President-Elect, Ahmed Bola Tinubu, to avoid an over populated cabinet as he settles down to work.

Making the call while speaking in an interview with Journalists in Abuja, the former Minister called on the President-Elect to consider more of technocrats in the appointment of his cabinet members.

He also wants the President-Elect to give priority to young people and give all his appointees a time line, for best performance.

Chief Wogu also advised that the new administration should appoint “the best hands to man the Ministries of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Labour and Employment as well as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).”

To turn around the nation’s economy for prosperity, the former Minister said the incoming President must have a robust economic team and focus on total reform of the oil subsidy regime, if he intends to turn around the ailing economy within a short time.

“It is quite central and strategic to the national economy because a strike that is prolong can bring down the economy.

“In other countries Labour Minister is a key minister. After the Ministry of Budget and National planning, the next is Labour, because Labour is central to the economy of every nation.

“The workers are the people who get this revenue for the government. That should be his focus and total reform of the oil subsidy regime. It might be painful to both the Nigerian workers and all that; but if we are going to remove subsidy on petrol, we should return the subsidy on diesel and kerosene and have a robust bus transportation system,” Wogu said.

To quickly revive the economy and avoid incessant strikes, the former Minister pointed out that the new administration should consider building more refineries and encourage private owned ones like that of Aliko Dangote to be productive, adding that it was a shame that Nigeria is still importing fuel after almost 100 years of crude oil exploration in the country.

Wogu pointed out that Nigeria has had very corrupt subsidy regime in the oil sector, adding that the new government should address this knotty issue and concentrate on gas, while diversifying other sources of revenue.

“We have a better prospect outside oil. The new frontier is gas, and Nigeria has a lot of gas.

Other minerals like gold, and so many others are found in almost all the 36 States of the federation including FCT”.

Asked if he would accept an offer to serve again if the President-Elect calls on him, Wogu answered in the affirmative saying he would accept such offer if the President has confidence in him and assured he would always have access to him.

He said, “once there is a political will, there is nothing you cannot achieve…if I have the support of the President as a Minister, I will achieve my goals. I was able to achieve a lot as Minister of Labour and Employment because my President had confidence in me and I had access to him”, he said.

He expressed the belief that “Tinubu’s Presidency would perform well and surprise Nigerians if he surrounds himself with good hands.

“I believe he will do very well, because he has a challenge. People will want to see if he can repeat the miracle of Lagos where he hired people who are even intellectually superior than him to run the system and he succeeded.

“That has always been his style when he was in Mobil Oil as a Treasurer and as an Accountant so I have much belief that he would do well despite the litigations”, Wogu said.

Source: Voice of Nigeria