Ministerial Appointment: Trouble Looms, El-Rufai Reportedly Accuses Tinubu Of Holding A Grudge Against Him
The immediate past Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai, has proposed Jafaru Sani for ministerial appointment after reportedly accusing President Bola Tinubu of holding a grudge against and keeping him in the dark while nominating him for a ministerial position.
Naija News House had reported that El-Rufai was one of the three ministerial nominees not confirmed by the Senate last week as the lawmakers cleared 45 out of 48 candidates Tinubu submitted for confirmation for ministerial appointment.
It was reports that El-Rufai confronted President Tinubu during a meeting at the State House earlier this week, accusing him (Tinubu) of having reservations about him (El-Rufai) and being aware of petitions against him but still nominated him for ministerial appointment.
He said that Tinubu’s failure to be upfront about any reservations he might have held against his ministerial appointment was indicative of a suppressed animosity.
Sources in State House privy to what happened at the meeting said that El-Rufai specifically said that it appeared Tinubu had “reservations about me because you can’t claim not to be aware of the petitions.”
An Aso Rock aide was quoted as saying, “We know of his high level of competence, and the president would rather have him as an ally rather than even a cursory enemy.”
Sources told the newspaper that at centre of the issue is the National Security Adviser, Nuhu Ribadu, who boosted the severity of a string of complaints against El-Rufai’s viability for a seat on the federal executive council to oppose his security clearance.
It was reports that El-Rufai met with Tinubu shortly after on Wednesday after the newspaper reported that the former governor had decided to withdraw from Tinubu’s cabinet because his nomination was withheld amid multiple security concerns.
El-Rufai specifically blamed Tinubu for allowing Ribadu and other zealous security aides to withhold his security clearance and consequently allow rumours to proliferate about his status.
Ribadu and other aides were said to have fervently pushed President Tinubu to pay attention to the flood of damaging petitions submitted against El-Rufai from different parts of the country including allegations of fomenting ethnic clashes in Kaduna and money laundering.
It was reported that before withdrawing his interest from the ministerial appointment, El-Rufai rejected entreaties from allies to make peace with Ribadu to enable the national security adviser to reconsider any opposition against his nomination.
However, El-Rufai has not publicly confirmed or debunked the report on his withdrawal nor has commented on specific allegations levelled against him in public petitions, except his previous general push against allegations of violence or corruption.
El-Rufai had said that he was not interested in appointment but that he would not hesitate to offer support to the President should his support be required.
It was reports that El-Rufai subsequently mentioned Jafaru Sani, a former commissioner in Kaduna, as his replacement, while he reportedly said he had informed the incumbent Kaduna Governor, Uba Sani, of his intention to nominate a potential minister from the State, and that they had agreed on the choice.
El-Rufai reportedly left Abuja for Egypt on Thursday night, but it is unclear when he would be back in the country.