As May 29 approaches, President Buhari is said to be under immense pressure to sack some of his aides and ministers for lack of performance.
A report by Nigerian Pilot reveals that a performance evaluation reports confidentially carried out by a select committee advised the president to “reorganise his cabinet”.
The president is said to have been upset by reports of disagreements among his appointees, non-performance of most of them and the allegations of corrupt practices that has been made against some of them.
A source in the presidency said: ”He is really pained that persons recommended by his party and friends of the government are not performing.
”They are self-serving and some of them have corruption allegations hanging around their necks that the whole scenario has become an embarrassment to the president and his administration.”
Speaking on the recent comments by British prime minister, David Cameron who described Nigeria as “fantastically corrupt,” the source noted that it was a huge embarrassment to the president.
”Yes, the president managed the embarrassment with diplomatic equanimity. But it did not mean that it was not an embarrassment to him, his government and the country.
”As a statesman who knows his onions he managed the fallouts very well. But it just will not end there. He saw it as a challenge to clean the dirty stable. The needful has to be done,” the source said.
More worryingly for the president is the evidence of some ministers openly disagreeing with his administration’s position on critical national issues.
In such cases, the government had been made to ”go the extra mile to issue statements to correct such bungling, thereby casting our confidence in doubts in the mind of the Nigerian public.
”Also, many of them work at cross purposes with mandated direction as if they were not well briefed on their schedules before they assumed duty.
”President Buhari cannot watch as his cabinet, the government and his party, consciously and unconsciously bungle APC’s success at polls. He has to stop the bitterness and hostilities among his appointees,” the source said.
Only recently, a minister and his junior minister reportedly almost engaged each other in fisticuffs over allegations of insubordination by the latter for the former, a major issue which reports say almost snowballed into a messy situation.
The president is also said to be concerned about the loads of complaints from the Nigerian public and the international community on the performance of his appointees.
”They lack initiative and are always waiting for the president to direct them before they are jolted to act. There is the belief that there is too much eye service around here.
”The president does not want to see their faces as often as they wish. All he needs is for them to work and deliver. Some of them even claim they are scared not to make mistakes that would offend the president. But they have not been seen to be trying to perform in the first case, ” another source squealed.
Also of concern to the president is the corruption allegations hanging over the head of many of his appointees. Buhari is said to be decided on relieving them of their appointment so his anti-corruption war will be taken seriously.
“Some of them hold the last signing of the 2016 budget as excuse for non-performance. That was expected. But is that a tenable excuse when they have not been able to streamline operations in their respective ministries and the parastatals under them?” one presidential aide asked.