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Wednesday, May 13, 2020

An open letter to Prof. Ibrahim Gambari - ITREALMS

Commentary@ITREALMS
Sir, may I use this medium to welcome you on board as the new Chief of State (CoS), Federal Republic of Nigeria after your appointment by the president, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.).

I have not met you before, so I am writing this letter to you with no attachment for any political gain & I want to believe that this letter will meet you in good condition with the contents considered.

Yesterday (Tuesday), the social media was agog about your appointment as the CoS, but the official announcement was made on (Wednesday) at the Federal Executive Council virtual meeting that was held today. So many names were even bandied around before your appointment.

Let me remind you that the position of the CoS is a creation of convention and practice.

The position of the CoS is not an elective position, but rather an appointment to be effected by the president.

I want to believe that your coming based on the appointment is to help the president to effectively organise his itinerary because a lot of controversies trailed the late Abba Kyari when he was in office & you don't need such, because such controversies smeared the credibility of the government, even the democratic tenets of the country. Nigerians want to see in you, a man who won't make enemies for the president.

As the CoS, your closeness to the president can't be overlooked, so you are to serve as the conduit in reaching the president. The interest of the people must be at your heart.

You are educated, you should be a team player, an incorruptible person and resourceful, my reasons for saying these are best known to me.

You should not be seen as a divisive figure in that office, as Nigerians no longer want a de facto president. Two people were elected to govern Nigerians, the president and the vice - president. If the president won't be available to carry out some duties, he should pass them to the vice - president. The vice - president must be up and doing, so don't render him redundant and don't subject him to several limitations.

I must also say that you don't need to lead delegates to negotiate an agreement or contract of any sort on behalf of the country when there are people to be saddled with such. Holding of secret meetings without the knowledge of your principal won't be of any gain to you, so do your job professionally.

Before the death of Abba Kyari, ministers were reporting to him, you don't need to maintain such line.

I have not forgotten the brawl the former CoS had with the former Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Winifred Ita - Oyo during a FEC meeting presided over by the vice - predident.

Your face must not be seen as regards negative happenings within and outside the villa.

As the CoS, you are to serve as the principal channel between the president and his core officials, to help him coordinate his programmes. The duties of a CoS is not meant for lighter weights, you must understand the rudiments involved in running a government. It is a 24 - hour job. I must not forget to mention to you that you should be ready to meet sycophants, but I want to believe that you must know how to deal with them. There won't be any need for you to step on toes and don't let the ministers speak about you in whispers, so you must relate with them very well.

Don't misuse the power given to you, as all power belongs to God. Your coming as the CoS must not worsen the condition of the country and do not see yourself as a tin - god. There must be a clear direction that you will be principally committed to upholding the constitution of the country in carrying out your duties. Your loyalty and a close confidant to your principal is vital, look at the structure on ground and then know how you can contribute your own quota to the country, so as to be administered positively.

The die is cast, the position is big, eschew yourself from power grab and political manipulations. Shun nepotism, tribalism etc because they are not needed. Don't attract negative publicity to yourself and your principal.

It is only the president that knows what he saw in you and you have to prove to Nigerians that you are fit to do the job and also ready to deliver. At the end of it all, it is posterity that will judge, if you served your principal and the country at large (faithfully or not).

Once again, welcome and I wish you all the best during your stay in office.

*Contributed by Chris Uruakpa from Lagos.

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