2017 has been a wonderful year with so many intrigues. This is especially so when the performance of 36 ministers in Nigeria is examined.
Within the year, many of these ministers have received endless banter, friendly jabs and commendations from Nigerians. Based on the overall performance of the Buhari administration, their general assessment is poor.
It is important to note that we are leaving out the junior ministers (minister of state). This is not because there are not important, but they usually follow the policy direction of the senior minister. But the situation of Mr Ibe Kachikwu is different.
Mr Abubakar Malami – Minister of Justice and Attorney General
For most of part 2017, Mr Malami has always been in the media for a wrong reason. If he is not colluding with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to bungle anti-corruption cases, he will be found contradicting a government position.
He is expected to lead the much-awaited judicial reforms, but he seems not to understand the magnitude of the task at hand. The government has lost more cases to technicalities and improper investigation under his watch than another Minister of justice.
Mr Geoffrey Onyeama – Minister of Foreign Affairs
Mr Geoffrey Onyeama is not a public person. However, for the most time he did within the year, it is to contract the position of an official in his ministry or other government functionaries.
Nigeria’s foreign policy since 2015 has been in shambles on Onyeama’s desk, and a series of unclear deals between Nigeria and China point to this fact.
His inactiveness to Libya and many other issues that needed his prompt clearly confirm this.
Mr Adamu Adamu – Minister of Education
The activities of the education ministry in 2017 show Mr Adamu is more of a journalist than an administrator. The sector has not left its pre-2015 state, as there is no coherent policy to advance the quality of education.
Judging by the number of strikes by labour unions in his ministry, Mr Adamu is in the same non-performing status as the foreign affair minister.
Usani Usani Uguru – Minister of Niger Delta Affairs
Mr Usani can be literally described as the Invisible minister. He was nowhere to be found when his attention is most needed.
Mr Emmanuel Kachikwu – Nigeria’s Minister of State for Petroleum, took over the duties of his ministry and played the role of peacemaker in a restive Niger Delta region all through the year.
It would be better Mr Usani’s ministry be seconded under Mr Kachikwu. This would allow for better performance of the ministry in maintaining peace in the region regarded as the country’s ‘cash cow’.
Dr Kayode Fayemi – Minister of Solid Minerals
Dr Kayode Fayemi was quiet throughout the year with no major achievement. He is always found promising to turn the solid minerals sector into a major economic power for Nigeria.
The Ajaokuta Steel company that most Nigerians expected would come to life this year, but there is a sign of revival under Dr Fayemi.
For most Nigerians, Dr Fayemi has been a minister that would announce a project with any trace of kick-off. And that is what we had from him all through the year.
Mr Adebayo Shittu – Minister of Communication
In 2017, Mr Shittu has done conference and summit attending than chatting a communication development for the country. Although, it is not surprising as his performance during the Senate screening tells it all.
The minister within the year is more concern about his gubernatorial ambition in Oyo state. Apart from not performing, the attempt at introducing telecom tax or increasing data price indicates Mr Shittu nothing to the table.
If there is going to be any cabinet reshufflement by this government, it is sure that Mr Shittu should one of those that would the exit door.
Mr Solomon Dalung – Minister of Youth and Sports
There is nothing that can be said of Mr Dalung’s achievement in 2017. Although he paid major on relieving us of many worries like Mrs Patience Jonathan.
Everywhere you turn, sportsmen and sportswomen are complaining about a dearth of facilities and poor welfare. These are of no concern to the minister.
In 2017, Mr Dalung continues to give us more of his khaki attire and red berets with no recipe for success in sports administration.
Alhaji Lai Mohammed – Minister of Information and Culture
In fact, 2017 was the year for Mr Lai Mohammed. He has continued to play his role of blaming the previous government for anything wrong in Nigeria.
It is known fact that Mr Lai basically knew how to get our attention away from the serious national issue.
“I have never told a lie before…,” Mr Lai told the country. He also planned using masquerades as sources of national income and asked why Big Brother Naija was shot in South Africa.
For an administration that has suffered from dysfunctional communication, Lai Mohammed has been the cherry on a soggy cake.
Dr Ogbonnaya Onu – Minister of Science and Technology
In the 21st century and internet age, the only achievement that a Nigerian minister of technology could think of is producing pencils.
It is a blank sheet for the minister in 2017.
Mrs Aisha Alhassan – Minister of Women Affairs
Just like Mr Shittu, something everyone can say about ‘Mama Taraba’ is that she is just biding her time in Abuja while awaiting another opportunity to make a governorship run.
For her in 2017, there is nothing significant to that she or her ministry achieved.
Mr Abdulrahman Dambazau Rtd – Interior Minister
Except announcing public holidays, there is nothing significant Mr Dambazau can say he worked in the year.
Although the country didn’t get a news of an orderly stooping to clean Dambazau’s shoes, Mainagate seems to be a good replacement for the year. The country is still battling porous borders, huge internal insecurity and no specific action to curtail the marauding herdsmen.
To many, Mr Dambazzu is actually having a retirement while being a minister in the country.
Mr Mohammed Bello – FCT Minister
In 2017, there is only one role Mr Bello played very well. And that is sending off and receiving President Buhari while travelling out of the country.
If only on this duty, he has performed creditably. Within the year, visitors to Abuja have complained of no Abuja’s street lights, high incidence of robbery in broad daylight and return of refuse heaps.
For the year, Mr Bello can be designated as the Minister of dignitaries.