All states must have substantive ministers; VATLAD

Written by on August 20, 2019

A group, the Vanguard for Transparent Leadership and Democracy, on Monday called on President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure that all the 36 states produce substantive ministers.

Buhari will assign portfolios to the ministers-designate on Wednesday.

The non-governmental group said the position of ministers of state, which it claimed makes some states inferior to the others, is not known to the Constitution.

The group’s National President, Igbini Emmanuel, said this in a statement made available to journalists in Abuja.

He said, “We have observed with serious concern, the consistent denial of some states their constitutional rights to produce substantive ministers like other states.

“Instead, Nigerian presidents relegate some states to producing so-called ‘ministers of state’ who are made subordinate to substantive ministers.

“Worse still, such positions of minister of states do not exist in Nigerian Constitution and as such, illegal.

“The implication of this is that, such appointments place some states statutorily superior or inferior to others.”

Emmanuel said it was to correct what he described as “abnormality” that the President is compelled by Section 147 of the 1999 Constitution, as amended, to appoint at least 36 substantive ministers, one from each of the 36 states.

He also asked that ministers-designate be assigned to ministries where they have adequate educational training, professional competence and experience.

He added, “Engineers should be appointed to Ministries of Works, Housing, Power and other engineering related ministries.

“Legal practitioners should be in charge of Ministry of Justice and related ministries.

“Accountants should be in Ministries of Finance, Budget Planning and Trade and Investments. Media practitioner should be in charge of Ministry of Information.”



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