Additional details have emerged regarding the unraveling of the agreement between President Bola Tinubu and former Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, for El-Rufai’s prospective ministerial role within the yet-to-be-formed Federal Executive Council.Thank you for reading this post, don't forget to subscribe!
According to a Saturday PUNCH investigation, El-Rufai was initially earmarked to lead the proposed Ministry of Power and Gas, due to his extensive discussions with the President about ensuring consistent power supply for the nation in the coming years.
Insights from sources reveal that during the presidential campaign, El-Rufai had informed Tinubu of his desire to live a quiet life abroad, but later changed his stance after intensive discussions with the President following the election victory.
El-Rufai suggested the inclusion of gas within the Ministry of Power to ensure uninterrupted power supply. His team of advisors included figures such as Jimi Lawal, Olu Verheijen, Eyo Ekpo, and Tolu Oyekan.
Sources indicate that certain factions within the Presidential Villa might have felt threatened by El-Rufai, leading to hesitance in confirming his appointment. Political opponents and various groups, such as the Christian Association of Nigeria, were speculated to be part of this resistance.
Despite the initial rapport between Tinubu and El-Rufai, some influential members within Tinubu’s circle expressed reservations about El-Rufai’s potential clout in the government, leading to concerns over his trustworthiness.
El-Rufai’s ministerial nomination also encountered obstacles with a security report sent to the President’s office and the National Assembly detailing reasons for his non-clearance.
Though initial reports suggested that El-Rufai withdrew his interest in being a minister, sources reveal that he still wishes to withdraw to focus on his doctoral program abroad. He suggested Jafaru Ibrahim Sani, a former commissioner under his governance, as a potential replacement. However, El-Rufai’s actual destination after his meeting with the President remains undisclosed.
The disintegration of the proposed ministerial appointments for Tinubu and El-Rufai sheds light on the complexities of political maneuvering and power dynamics within Nigerian politics.