Former Commissioner of Information of Kogi State and stakeholder of the All Progressive Congress, APC, Dr. Tom Ohikere has expressed his disappointment over the acts of incivility displayed by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, during one of the hearing sessions of the ad hoc committee of the House of Representatives probing the sack of the management of Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund, NSTIF.
The House had summoned Ngige to appear before its committee on Finance investigating the circumstances behind the dismissal of the Managing Director/Chief Executive of NSITF, Adebayo Somefun by the Minister.
During its hearing, Chairman of House Committee on Finance, James Faleke, who is an associate of national leader of APC, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, had questioned Ngige on whether due process was followed in the dismissal of the NSTIF boss.
Ohikere who frowned at the minister’s behavior for turning what is the constitutional oversight function of the national assembly to a joke, instead of focusing on the subject matter, described it as a show of shame.
He said it was disappointing that some of the ministers surrounding President Muhammadu Buhari were not helping the President in the fight against corruption but instead proud themselves in it trying every possible ways to ridicule the president’s stride on the fight against corruption.
“PMB does not deserve these kind of men in the federal executive council. Ngige appears unexecutive and more of a joker than a cabinet minister.
“If Mr. President needs to be taken seriously by citizens, especially on his fight against corruption, he should rejig his cabinet to accommodate only leaders with high level of integrity, good characters and sense of responsibility,” Ohikere stated.
The former commissioner chided Chris Ngige for throwing tantrums at Tinubu, saying the two do not belong to the same political pedestal.
“Chris Ngige has lost a lot of his electoral battles and so shouldn’t compare himself with Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, the national leader of the ruling All Progressive Congress APC who had distinguished himself politically, socially and economically but should focus on vindicating himself of the corruption he is been accused of.
“Ngige whose 2003 Anambra governorship election victory was voided in 2005 and 2006 by the courts and his subsequent attempts to become Governor of Anambra in 2007 and 2010 ended in defeats as well.
“Even though Ngige won the 2011 Anambra Central senatorial election on the ACN platform, he was beaten by Hon. Mrs Uche Ekwunife in 2015 as he sought to make a return to the national assembly.
“Leadership grooming has been found as the forte of great leaders and statesmen. The prosperity of Tinubu’s idea is his eye for excellence with which he recruits future leaders.
“Ngige has failed to recognise how Tinubu has over the years blended a crop of new leaders who have turned out to become change-agents and drivers in both Lagos State, Nigeria and the world at large. He has allowed his charisma to infect many young people, thereby enhancing the fructification of his ideas in politics and the professions.
“Ngige only mentored Okija Shrine, hence comparing himself with Asiwaju Tinubu is the height of hallucination. He thinks displaying rings round his ten fingers makes him an uncommon Leader?.
“Ngige should check history well before he make utterances, Tinubu emerged the only surviving governor from the platform of Alliance of Democracy (AD), which produced the entire governors of the Southwest geopolitical zone and the expertise he displayed in raising the state’s internally generated revenue to withstand the induced fiscal straightjacket imposed on the state government as punishment for creating an additional 37 Local Government Council Development Centres stands him out from any match.
“Strengthened by that epic political battle, Asiwaju earned his stripes as the Jagaban Borgu and went ahead to do exploits, winning one strategic engagement after another. Through his foresight, three states in the Southwest were recovered into the progressive fold, including Ekiti, Ondo and Osun. What antecedent does Ngige has to compare himself with Asiwaju.
“Chris Ngige is just but a political misfit who only enjoys the ministerial position with impunity without bringing any positive change to table ever since he assumed office as the minister of labour and Employment and should be replaced with a better option,” Ohikere averred.