These are not the best of times for the Mohammadu Buhari administration following the heartbreaking demise of the powerful Chief of Staff and personal gate keeper to the President of the federal republic of Nigeria, Malam Abba Kyari.
The tension inside the kitchen cabinet of President Buhari has not been the same since the unfortunate news. The President, according to sources was hit hard by the news.
“He was optimistic up till the very end” said our source.
Now the full weight of reality has come down on the shoulders of the president in a manner he is not accustomed to.
Abba Kyari had played a role in the Buhari administration that defined the administration’s perception by the public and by the manner it executes its duties. Abba Kyari, through the urging of Mr. President, turned the office of the chief of staff to the most powerful office in Nigeria.
For this reason, seeking a replacement for Kyari has become a do-or-die affair for the members of the kitchen cabinet, particularly Mamman Daura – the supposed leader of the Buhari kitchen cabinet.
Also, the wife to the President, Aisha Buhari
has thrown her weight into the race for the new chief of staff.
As reported, Maman Daura has indicated interest in old political guru Babagana Kingibe as his prime choice.
While Aisha Buhari prefers Buba Marwa.
Kingibe, according to reports, had already begun running the office of the chief of staff while Kyari was away for medical treatment. “Kingibe was there, running the government before Kyari’s death” said our source who also noted that the first lady was not particularly happy with the decision to let Kinigibe into the office to handle affairs in the absence of Kyari.
She saw Kyari’s absence as the opportunity and the opening she had been longing for since her husband’s arrival to the Presidential villa in 2015.
“Madam is determined. Don’t underrate her”
The members of the President Executive Council [FEC] are believed to be privately working to advance the First Lady’s interest to arm-twist the President into reducing the influence of Mamman Daura.
Our source points to a significant numbers from
the National Assembly who are with ‘Madam”. They do not want another Abba
Kyari-styled chief of staff again. Rather, they prefer a more seasoned and
independent politician at the seat. They have no particular affinity to Marwa.
They just do not want Mamman Daura to make the choice.
“Madam has secrets”. She knows where some of
the bodies are buried. She has told some close aides that Kingibe intends to
contest for president in 2023 after Buhari’s administration. She also believes
Kingibe will “certainly betray Buhari”. He is said to be “a very selfish
and ambitious politician”.
Kingibe was the one responsible for the plot for the removal of the former Secretary to the Government of the Federation [SGF], Ahmed Yayale during the late President Ya’Adua administration.
President Buhari, on his side, has already sealed up his mind on this matter. He has already decided on Kingibe as the next chief of staff. This in not until pressures began to mount from unlikely quarters – who want Mamman Daura’s influence over the chief of staff’s office curtailed.
The Buhari Organization [TBO], Buhari Support Group [BSG] and other like groups have expressed their strong feelings over the choice of Kingibe.
Mamman Daura, on his end, is not moved. He is still firm on his resolve to hoist Kingibe to the seat. In fact, Kingibe continues to act as the chief of staff, presently.
Daura is confident, the President will follow
Meanwhile, other personalities are lined up for the position. Some of the mentioned names are Mohammed Sarki Abba who currently serves as the S. A. Domestic – he is the preferred choice of the Buhari organization, [TBO]
Adamu Adamu – minister of education – he has no sponsor but he is considered the most independent minded
Hamid Ali – the Customs boss – preferred choice of Buhari Support Group [BSG]. He is regarded as too rigid and arrogant
Ibikunle Amosun – former governor of Ogun State. He is a personal choice of the President. He is considered too arrogant and power hungry.