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African press review 1 October 2015

The release of President Muhammadu Buhari's cabinet picks create havoc during National Day celebrations in Nigeria. The list is to be completed before confirmation hearings begin next week.

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We stay in Nigeria where the newspaper vendors are rubbing their hands in pleasant anticipation of a field day of sales as the country’s national dailies splashed out front-page spreads on President Muhammadu Buhari’s cabinet.

Several papers report that the list of 21 names already sent to the Senate for confirmation includes a cream of former governors: Babatunde Fashola from Lagos State; Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State; Kayode Fayemi, a former governor of Ekiti State; ex-Anambra State governor Chris Ngige; and a one-time governor of Abia State, Ogbonaya Onu.

The Nigerian Tribune says it is able to confirm the presence of the following dignitaries in the president’s cabinet picks: Aisha Alhassan^, a gubernatorial candidate for the ruling All Progressive Party in Taraba; Adebayo Shittu, an APC chieftain in Oyo State; Abubakar Malami, the ruling party’s legal adviser; and Lai Mohammed, the APC’s national publicity secretary.

Daily Post names Senator Udoma Udo Udoma from Akwa Ibom State as one of the dignitaries whose name features in the list. Emmanuel Kachikwu, new group managing director of the state-owned national oil company is also included.

He is expected to serve as minister of state for petroleum as Buhari has confirmed that he will head the ministry, according to the newspaper.

“At last”, headlines Vanguard, heaving a sigh of relief that the longest-awaited news is out. The paper however expresses dismay at the fact that the list contained only 21 nominees out of the expected 36 prescribed by the constitution. But it learned from a source that Buhari plans to send others very early next Tuesday before the Senate’s plenary session.

Even though it took President Buhari four full months to find 36 honest men fit to sit in his cabinet, Punch says it must have been a tough job for a country located at the bottom rung of Transparency International’s global corruption perception index. According to the newspaper, it was even harder especially for a man of high integrity like Buhari to identify the cleanest dirty shirts in the laundry.

And as Nigerians celebrates their 55th National Day, The Sun picked out prime phrases from President Buhari’s televised message to the Nation on Wednesday night.

The President urged Nigerians to be grateful to his predecessor Dr Goodluck Jonathan for accepting defeat in the March presidential election, an action which he said saved the country from untold consequences.

Buhari also dismissed fears that his government may embark on a pay-back mission to those who offended him. “I bear no ill will against anyone on past events,” he said, adding that people should only fear the consequences of their actions. Buhari extended a hand of friendship to Nigerians of all political views to join him in working for the nation, according to the Sun.

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