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Doris Uzoka-Anite: A Sleeping Minister? (2) By Ugochukwu Joe


Dec 17, 2023

Sometimes, when issues of governance and competence in leadership are discussed and brought to the front burner, they are mixed with sentiments, emotions, selfishness, and a raging display of deceit laced with propagandist all in a bid to sieve the issues from its major foci.

Largely and not politically influenced are comments and opinions expressed in a way that positively sues to correct situations and possibly to draw corrections to very dire situations.

In the first part of this piece, I talked about how the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Doris Uzoka-Anite, has left her job at the ministry to chase shadows and push away contributions of eggheads who have for years, managed Nigeria’s trade destinations for decades and cemented its position in the comity of states.

One of such instances I mentioned was brought to the fore last week during the ministry’s 2024 budget defence at the National Assembly. There, the noticeable cases of ineptitude and high handedness the Minister has exhibited led to her abysmal display. Although debunked, it was a sad tale when the Minister found it difficult to distinguish between using N1bn meant for the activities of the Nigerian Trade Office in Geneva, Switzerland, and using it for a foreign trip, as well as of not having the data of the Trade agreement between China and Nigeria.

These two instances are some of the reasons why I have since the start of the piece undescored the fact that the Minister isn’t really prepared for work. The woman is just an incompetent misfit who has shown the incapability to lead or drive anything significant in the Ministry. Perhaps the reason why Comrade (Senator) Adams Oshiomhole submitted that since she does not stay in her office, she does not have the wherewithal to fully function in full capacity. It is high time Uzoka-Anite gets down to work or be shown the way out if she thinks a government agency is her personal property.

That show of shame, though historic, will continue to rubbish the person of Uzoka-Anite and the office she currently holds. Apart from consistent social media recalls from the incident, the situation leaves so much to be desired. Even if the N1bn Geneva budgetary provision was fair enough, what is there to explain why a Minister has not settled into her official office four months since becoming a member of the Federal cabinet.

While a lot of us are excited that even the federal lawmakers responsible for oversight know the true situation, it is expected that she returns to her office, sufficiently manage the staff and create a harmonious relationship with the civil servants and other stakeholders in the critical sector.

Now it’s the time for business, let the Minister refuse to sleep and do the job she was employed for.

Ugochukwu Joe writes from Abuja

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