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Published On: Fri, Aug 2nd, 2013

Shake-Up: Fear Grips Ministers as Jonathan Summons Emergency FEC Meeting Today

LAGOS AUGUST 2ND (URHOBOTODAY)- Fear of cabinet shake-up gripped many ministers as President Goodluck Jonathan convened an emergency Federal Executive Council meeting.
The meeting will hold on Friday (today). The FEC holds its statutory meetings on Wednesday.
It was gathered that with last week’s resignation of the Minister of State for Health, Dr. Mohammed Pate, a cabinet shake-up was imminent.
A minister, who confided in one of our correspondents, said, “There is fear among my colleagues that a cabinet shake-up is imminent. Currently, there is no minister of defence and the minister of state for health has just resigned.

President Goodluck Jonathan

“Some of my colleagues have indicated their intention to contest governorship elections in some states. Such people will leave the cabinet. We do not know the agenda of the meeting. When will get there, we will know.”
It was gathered that for the past two weeks, some ministers had been telling civil servants, close to them, that there might be swapping of positions in the President’s cabinet.
The minister, who confided in one of our correspondents, said, “Some ministers of state are hoping to become substantive ministers with vacancies in the cabinet.”
The Minister of Police Affairs, Caleb Olubolade, had a few weeks ago declared his intention to contest the Ekiti State governorship in 2014.
Our correspondent learnt that Jonathan informed cabinet members of the impending meeting during the last statutory meeting of the council on Wednesday.
A Presidency source said, “There is nothing hidden about it. The President announced at the beginning of the last meeting that an emergency meeting will hold for about one hour or two on Friday.
“The President did not give reasons for the meeting but it is not an unusual thing. Every statutory body holds extraordinary meetings apart from their normal meetings.”
There were reports on Monday that five northern governors – Aliyu Babangida (Niger); Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto); Sule Lamido (Jigawa); Rabiu Kwankanso (Kano) and Muritala Nyako (Adamawa) – who met with the President on Saturday demanded the sacking of two ministers, Deziani Allison (Petroleum); and Stella Oduah (Aviation).
A highly reliable Presidency source, however, said, “How could they have asked for the sack of the ministers, when they are not from their states?”
Since his inauguration in May 2011, Jonathan has not carried out any major cabinet reshuffle.
Source: Punch

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