Insider details are now emerging from sources close to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu shedding more light on the “meticulous process, ” behind his choice of Chief of Staff, from a retinue of interested and qualified associates of his.
President Tinubu’s knack for selecting capable individuals for key positions has been widely praised. His history of successful appointments, from President, Vice President to Governors, Ministers, legislative leaders among other highlights his deep understanding of Nigeria’s political landscape, observes say.
According to an inside source, President Tinubu had articulated his vision for the ideal Chief of Staff before publicly declaring his interest to run. He was determined to select an individual who possessed a unique blend of qualities to navigate the complexities of Nigerian politics successfully.
The source emphasized that President Tinubu, often described as a visionary leader himself had recognized the significance of the Chief of Staff role in his administration. He was keenly aware of the intricate terrain of Nigerian politics, particularly after the late Abba Kyari’s “influential tenure” in the position.
Tinubu, also known for his decisiveness and thorough consideration of key appointments, “was seeking a Chief of Staff with a specific set of qualities. Experience and a proven track record were non-negotiable criteria. He had no intentions of entering the presidency with a Chief of Staff who was still learning the ropes of how to support a President in running a nation.”
The source pointed out that President Tinubu closely observed the performance of Femi Gbajabiamila during his tenure as Speaker of the House of Representatives. Gbajabiamila’s experience managing various national challenges, including handling national strikes and negotiating with unions, made him stand out among contenders for the role.
“None of the other contenders came close to the level of nation-building experience that Gbajabiamila had acquired during his time as the No. 4 man in the country,” the source emphasized.
Furthermore, President Tinubu was not swayed by how long someone has been around him but rather focused on capacity, posture, and competence when selecting his Chief of Staff. This commitment to competence and experience showcased his determination to hit the ground running and effectively lead Nigeria.
The conversations regarding the Chief of Staff appointment reportedly gained momentum after the removal of the fuel subsidy, a move that initially stirred concerns about national stability, and the President’s resolve to find a perfect fit became more urgent as he needed someone that is both loyal and is also able to support the president in maintaining calm and peace during this challenging time.
Two other factors that Presidential Villa sources disclosed influenced the decision was hardwork and ability to use government resources to support the people.
The sources said Gbajabiamila was always with the President during the campaign, many times travelling late at nights putting in a lot of hardwork during what was a dicey campaign.
Besides, the sources added that President Tinubu was impressed by the timing of the Students Loan Bill which he signed to the applause of many in the country because of the wide appeal for the legislation by many Nigerians. The signing of that bill orchestrated by Gbajabiamila gave huge political capital to the President.
In all according to the source ” the meticulous process behind President Tinubu’s Chief of Staff selection underscores his commitment to delivering effective leadership to Nigeria. His vision for a strong, competent, and experienced Chief of Staff reflects his determination to navigate the complex political terrain and address the nation’s pressing challenges.